Even though no one can file Audrey Horne
between the fixed stars of hard rock, there is no doubt the band really deserves it since every new album (even though there were just a few so far) recorded in LA is a piece that has so much to offer. On the other hand, maybe their non-mainstreamness is a fact that makes the band and their music more attractive.
the fact that I was waiting for something a bit different from this band, this was a really nice surprise. The band makes a progress with every album and you can still hear some kind of the band’s “handwriting” even when the atmosphere is slightly different from the previous albums. The whole line of the music appeals more straightforward and more deep and mature. And
with a limited digipack which contains next six re-recorded songs and covers, the new release on Norwegian hard-rockers makes up a great musical experience for fans as well as for casual listeners.
The intro These Vultures hits you with a dose of melancholy filled with hope and stops every time it reaches the moment where you would expect a flogging to start. The following Caron doesn’t ties up as it is usual but starts in a different spirit. Very striking, catchy and still melodic with many details like just quiet occasional tings – as well as the rest of the album, the track is very shifty and anything but boring.
As for many people a circus brings something ominous and dark, in the same way appeals the next homonymic song. The magic of the album is pretty much about the atmosphere it can evoke and in light of this, Circus
does the work.
is a song which the fans could hear on the band’s MySpace and websites and which was well chosen for the purpose to show how the whole album would look like. The key melody puts the melancholy and the vibrancy all together and puts the song to the whole new level. Starting very clearly, the song keeps on gradating until its end on which the next song perfectly ties up.
is in an almost hurrying movement and the repeating lines of the lyrics don’t make the song pathetic, vice versa they give the song more vehement flow. As an opposite comes Sail Away which’s name frankly sais everything about its spirit. The ballad is enriched with the classic rock elements, riffs and the guitars in general do a great job as well as keys and drums which give place to more mellow side of the band’s creation.
track named Bridges and Anchors is much more whooping and stronger than the previous tracks but it doesn’t have a lack of melody and the guitar solo shows that neither technique. Here i personally find the biggest difference in Toshie’s voice in comparison to the previous albums but that may be just a personal feeling.
Beginning with dramatic drums and by time adding the other instruments, Pitch Black
Mourning has a slight southern “accent.” The synthesized voice becomes clear only during the chorus, the key solo is fluently replaced by guitars and the whole song replaced by the other, deeper and more old school sounding Firehose. Changing from very heavy to very calm, the song is very memorisable and with Darkdrive they make a heavy part of the album and show the perfect synthesis between all the instruments, all the members, all the influences.
The last track of the album Godspeed
is a perfect farewell song, not only because of “farewell, farewell, we will see you again” repeating quite often. In general it is a song filled with sadness and hope as well as the promise. Who knows, maybe a promise of a new piece of work, at least as good as this one.
But now something to the bonus digipack. Starting Desert
Song may share the name with many other songs but this one is an original acoustic ballad with again interesting lyrics and snazzy melody. The following Carrie
has no electric guitars or heavy riffs as well as the previous one but it doesn’t pick away any energy of the track.
The re-recorded version of Bright Lights in contradistinction to its precursor from Le Fol
is axed of the screamed passage which is replaced by clean vocals which despite the equality makes the song very different.
To Run is the first of the two covers. The original Kiss
song is slightly remade and in acoustic version it gets an Audrey Horne
sound which fits it surprisingly well.
Rearview Mirror is the only Audrey Horne
song featuring female vocals (by Heidi
Marie Vestrheim). Together
with Toschie’s and with the very calm melody it doesn’t even hurt the haters of kitsch even though the son may appeal like an incarnation of one.
The last one and the one that gripped me the most is the cover of Beyoncé’s Halo
which in my opinion is quite a good pop song itself. But as a cover it gets rid of all the R’n’B cliché and gets a sparkle which a song like this can get only with male vocals.