By This Black Velvetine
This Black Velvetine's latest release, the three track EP "Goodbye" reeks of all things sleaze, snot and debauched rock. Yup, vocals that register on the radar somewhere between Axl Rose and Sebastian Bach territory, guitar solos that shriek and wail like a banshee having a particularly nasty boil on her arse lanced, and riffs that originate from the nether regions. Obviously this style of music can polarise people quite easily - see The Darkness - however, this recording is carried off with enough substance behind it to justify any misconceptions people may have about this style of music being an attempt to jump on the bandwagon of the cock-rock resurgence that has being going on in the past few years.
Opener "Goodbye" showcases This Black Velvetine's tight-as-a-nuns chuff rhythm section, which allows vocalist Ryan Mallinson the freedom to contort his voice in all manner of vocal theatrics. The opening few bars of the guitar riff reminded of Glass Jaw's "Pretty Lush" before slipping into a slick number in the vein of Guns and Roses, complete with a breakdown with some chunky riffing in it.
Second track on the CD "Queen and Country" doesn't live up to the pace or standard set by the first song; to be honest it seems a song a bit at odds with itself both in terms of its tempo, which veers uncomfortably all over the place and the actual structure of the song - I'm still not sure exactly why they put in a middle 8 that sounds as if it came out of the Jungle Book, but oh well... Thankfully the equilibrium is restored by final song "The Red Thread" which starts off with a Maiden-esque guitar riff before proceeding into a taut rock workout with duelling guitar lines and pounding bass.
Altogether certainly a good effort by these four young men - although I feel the CD would have benefited by slightly more polished production, as the guitars don't seem to stand out as much as they should do, and the production sometimes gets a bit murky. However, this is a minor quibble, and I'm sure This Black Velvetine will use this recording and their live performances to establish themselves as ones to watch on the local rock scene.