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Old 04-20-2006, 03:11 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster - The Royal Society



2004

1. Rise of the Eagles
2. I Could Be an Angle
3. When I Hear You Call My Name
4. Migrate Migraine
5. Puppy Dog Snails
6. The Dancing Girls
7. The Fool
8. I Rejection
9. Drunk on the Blood
10. Mister Mental
11. Freud's Black Muck
12. Temple Music
13. The Men of the Way of the Stuff

Following on from their monumental 2002 debut, "Horse of the Dog", The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster gained a cult status for their outrageous, primal brand of anarchic psychobilly. So, the second album? How does a band evolve and bring a sound so uncommercial and extreme to a mass audience? Well with "The Royal Society" they very nearly achieve the seemingly unachievable.

Gone are the miscellaneous obscenities and aural mauling of the first album, in their place is a dark humour and wry intelligence that signals an attempt to invade the mainstream. With a string of influences ranging from the Cramps to the pure viciousness of the Damned to the sheer angst of the Grunge era it is 46 minutes of sheer pandemonium played at breakneck speed.
However, a one-trick pony this is not. Punk, Goth, Metal, rockabilly and even cabaret are all prevalent features that create a mishmashed sound of unique brutality and intensity.

At times this album sounds like a New Years Eve part from the deepest chasms of Hell. The twisted, menacing "Drunk on Blood" is a cabaret of horror, whilst "Puppy Dog's Snails" will frighten any child below the age of 8. Yet the true highlights are; ironically, the complete opposite to what the debut came to represent, “Rise of the Eagles" and "Mister Mental" are pop-rock perfection with a dark underbelly and zany outer shell. They fizz along leaving chaos in their wake - though they are not the only plus points. "Freud’s Black Muck" oozes power as Guy McKnight howls like a Jim Morrison possessed whilst "Way of the Men and Stuff" is the aural equivalent of a sledgehammer to the face.

The appeal of this album is its originality. They have blended the best parts of a variety of aforementioned genres and influences to create this hybrid of pure chaos. It bubbles with sinister and sadistic aggression. The musicianship is frantic yet skilled - with distortion and conflicting chords conveying a mood most similar to a state of dementia.

Yet despite the quality this album has, it fails to fully do what is needed for this band to evolve - to appeal to a mass audience. It seems this is a band destined to remain rooted in the realms of cult status - which is a shame because music as creative and dynamic as this should be shared.

Rating - 8/10
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Old 04-20-2006, 09:23 PM   #2 (permalink)
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A much better review.
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