Loud and proud?

Maybe it's just because I've been listening to Metallica but something strikes me about the start of this album. Strikes me with a big hammer! "I am the Night, Colour Me Black" begins with a heavily distorted, metal riff and some thumping bass. In kicks the twangy guitar and things start to look a little dicey. Then the vocals kick in and I'm thinking, "Ah Well, nevermind". Its more shouting from the throat, with too much treble. It seems more punk now rather than metal. That's not a bad thing of course, but my mind is somewhat undecided and confused.

Yay for Cow-Bell! Is there anything more old-school rock than a cow-bell? I thought that would sum up the band rather well but it only goes some-way towards that. "Run Home" doesn't seem to quite fit that category; it is laced with more metal and punk overtones. "Talk to her" feels more like a classic rock track. The vocals aren't screamed throughout and I can certainly discern a little more of the song. "Time will cut you down" does indeed slow things down, though we are treated to quite a nice guitar solo and some interesting juxtaposition of quiet and loud moments.

It dawns on me that even in the quiet moments, this band sounds loud. Now, I'm sure some of you out there will like that, but it isn't good people. It's a noisy kind of loud. In places you want a softer tone to contrast with the weapons of mass distortion soon to come. By "Performance" we are back to to the familiar formula but with a slight twist. The song has a slight melancholic twist to it and certainly seems catchier than the previous songs, with more memorably lyrics and hooks.

"No Real Pain" smacks a little bit more of Velvet Revolver in it's tempo and guitar style, minus the ninja guitar solo's of course. Right at the end of the album, we have, for the first time, some real change in vocal sound and indeed, the loudness of this band. It makes for good finish and rounding off of the album but I'm left wondering why this variety didn't make it through to the rest of the album? It's been said that this particular song is very "Queens of the Stone Age"-like in it's execution and I'd have to agree, though sadly, it's nowhere near as catchy.

It's punky, cymbal heavy, simple, loud and generally boring. Yup, there. I said it. It doesn't grab me and say listen, it just begins to get a little on my nerves. Again, it's not played badly and the sound will definitely appeal to some. It's a promising first start for this Canadian band and given that their style is somewhat restrictive, it's solid. Not quite my cup of tea. Not quite hard rock, not quite metal. I like "some" bits but it's too much of the same.