Twin Guns are Dealing Western Devils Out of Brooklyn

The double-edged sword of contemporary, ubiquitous music releases on the Internet is that bands like Twin Guns are out there and you haven’t heard them yet. While a reviewer might use this line for many albums by bands recently discovered, “Scene Of The Crime” by Twin Guns, released in March 2011,  is the one that inspired it.

The Twin Guns are extremely generous with the devil’s chord in the opening tracks of Scene Of The Crime, taking on a rockabilly-Black Sabbath tone that is almost too easy to get into… like a contract with the son-of-the-morning himself. Twangy guitar and corrugated sheet-metal roof thumping drums are continuous through the dusty tracks that Andrea Sicco and “Jungle” Jim Chandler laydown on their range, making spurs jingle-jangle through a backdrop of urban chaos that evokes a backroom punk show at Gooski’s (for Pittsburghers who know that effect from experience).

Vocals come through big, like old-timey tunes… listen for wailing and lamentation, as well as coyote calls. At first it is a bit off-putting, as the instrumentals are so pounding and jarring the ear looks for a clean line in the lyrics. However, by not finding a clearer tonic from the sound engineering of the voices the sound of Twin Guns has a consistency of grit and tormented musical structure that is satisfyingly unsettled (perhaps extending the theme of buttering up the listener for an unholy commitment to a deal with the devil). It also goes a long way toward selling the lonesome cowboy emotion that seems to drive the wagon onward. This trend comes to an apex, in well managed order, with track 4, “Safe,” when pedal effects on both vocals and guitars take you over a canyon cliff somewhere out in the unpopulated vastness of the west Rocky Mountains.

Instrumentally the album doesn’t stop inventing. For example, use of essential piano tones, coming over where the mind’s ear envisions rhythm guitar laying on top of the lead. Confessing a slight aversion to the overdrive effects of synthesizer and soundboard background sounds through the first four tracks, it all comes together for resolution in track 5, “Druggy and Suicidal,” which is every bit the homage to rock n’ roll stars burning out like meteors that the title suggests. This is immediately justified by track 6 (“One More Night Of Sin”) opening with a church bell beat that sets up a lead guitar packed with glissando & crescendo. Listen for super-subtle alt-surf guitar and arching vocal deliveries on what balances out as a mellower song compared to the first half of the album. This mellowness seems to groove-on into the remainder of the album… for moments, but then the moments are gone.

The whammy bar gets just ridiculous, in the best of ways, on the latter tracks. What’s more, there is a surprising operatic coolness to track 8 (“She Cried”), where a neo-Quadrophenia sound of the ocean waves opening and another lonesome, wild-west yodel ride out on another set of silky and surfy guitar waves. Some spoken word aspects accent the song with a sort of hipster-Meatloaf result that does more to make the listener replay the track than to cast doubt on the, at this point of the album “signature,” sound qualities that it has just condensed through the cochlea.

The album might be best for the big finish of the final track. Using a recording of a subway car taking off, and singing about the same, it seals the listener’s fate with a guilty pleasure-inducing familiarity that forces the question… is that a Kink’s song? …the Clash? …funky early, Peter Gabriel-era Genesis? …nope, it’s Twin Guns.

Scene Of The Crime by Twin Guns is out on reverbnation.com and many of your friendly Internet music peddlers.

RIVAL SONS NEW ALBUM ‘HEAD DOWN’ OUT NOW

Soulful, maximum-blues-infused hard rock band RIVAL SONS’ new album HEAD DOWN is out now on Earache Records and has garnered the band both critical acclaim (including a four-out-of-five star review from The Guardian/U.K.) and a “Breakthrough Artist” award at this week’s Classic Rock Awards show in London. Coming off of a five-week U.K./European headlining tour (having already played to massive crowds in Europe at festivals such as Rock Am Ring and Download, and opening for Guns N’ Roses), RIVAL SONS look to 2013 to showcase the record here in the U.S. with North American tour dates to be announced soon and the physical album hitting stores January 22, 2013.
HEAD DOWN reached #1 on the Rock chart in the U.K. and “Keep on Swinging,” the first single off HEAD DOWN, was featured in last week’s USA Today’s “The Playlist” column, seen HERE.
With their blues bravado, raw riffing and unmatched mystique, the Long Beach, CA quartet evoke the rock of legendary bands like Led Zeppelin. Formed in 2008, the quartet of Scott Holiday (guitar), Robin Everhart (bass), Mike Miley (drums), and Jay Buchanan (vocals) captures that massively huge, guitar-driven classic rock sound, with rock-solid drumming and a riff-oriented approach to songwriting backing up Buchanan’s soaring vocals. The band wrote, recorded, and mixed HEAD DOWN in just 20 days, and the band conjured the same energy that made their last album a fan and critical favorite, while treading new territory altogether. The rawness and immediacy–textured with a myriad of light and shade–produce powerful results. Explains Buchanan: “In the code of the Samurai, any decision must be made between 3 and 5 breaths…Writing by that code forces us to act, go with our instincts and really, truly listen to each other. Creatively, you’re bringing your most immediate instincts.”
The video for the first single “Keep On Swinging” from HEAD DOWN can be seen here: www.vevo.com/watch/rival-sons/keep-on-swinging/GBA631200133