Tuesday, July 23, 2013
AMERICAN HEAD CHARGE - SHOOT EP - REVIEW
WRITHE - a sexy and slow burn track with a cool drum/vocals combination that builds to the signature American Head Charge in your face chorus. Nice textures in the song without being bogged down with too many effects. Perhaps you could call this a more stripped down sound. The powerful chorus is used quite effectively to contrast the slow build of the beginning of the song
Set Yourself On Fire - this song feels really dark from the start. Heavy bass and drum intro. Almost tribal beats transitioning into menacing guitars. The vocals start low and transition into a really great pissed off delivery. What sounds like the whir of a bone saw swirls beneath the mid point of the song works perfectly with acoustic strumming coming over the top of the effects. The song continues to develop throughout the song with a really dark and memorable chorus that sticks in your head.
Sugars of Someday - This is a real rock sounding song. The light and airiness of the song complete with Hand Claps lead into dark and sinister places. Cameron really set's the tone with a delivery no short of a carnival barker from hell. The song rounds itself out returning to the chorus and closes with the rock sound the song began with.
Sand - absolutley my favorite track on this ep and perhaps one of their best. They definitely succeed in bringing back a sound that's been missing for many years now. The vocals enter at almost a whisper and build with deadly intentions. When the chorus kicks in, the band grinds out a heavy dose of sludge as Cameron delivers a scream that could peel paint and turn sand into glass. This song is worth the price of the EP itself.
Rock n Roll N*gger - This is an unexpected Patti Smith cover, delivered in the vein of bands like Monster Magnet and Rob Zombie. This track is hell raising fun. The provocative nature of the song fits well with AHC's rebellious and "take no prisoner's" attitude. For a song that was way ahead of it's time, this is the band to do it justice.
Overall Assessment: 95%
The Shoot EP is just the beginning. AHC is a band revitalized. This is not a comeback album. This is a WELCOME BACK album. Out of the scene for 6 years and having 3 stellar releases under their belt, this release puts AHC back on the map.
Shoot really showcases the band's growth in song writing and musicality. The songs are really focused. Sugars and Writhe build slower, draw you in and deliver that powerful punch towards the chorus. They have a much more rock sound and the tone of the two songs are more upbeat. Set Yourself on Fire and Sand are beasts. These songs develop quickly into the signature heaviness many fans know from their earlier work. The tracks are slick, dark and sinister.The Patti Smith cover feels like a release for a band that has had to face a lot of adversity in their downtime. It really highlights a fun side of the band. They have always been a band that loves to create powerfully driven music. I look forward to see what direction Shoot takes the band, I'm sure it'll be a hell of a ride.
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