Old rona may be hanging around like a party guest who’s overstayed their welcome, but …
Opening track and lead single White Shadow–which documents “a frantic mind unravelling”, according to vocalist Matt Caughthran–commences with a riff that conjures a (slightly defective) motorbike revving before, boom! In swirls a whirling cacophony of sound, driven by the peerless Joey Castillo’s maximum-horsepower drumming–so potent and immediate!
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Every member of The Bronx contributed to the songwriting for Bronx VI, which steers some of these songs down previously unexplored sonic highways. But, fear not, all of The Bronx’s essential elements–dirty, distorted riffs, thwacking drums and Caughthran’s relentless punk spirit–remain.
As always, Caughthran barks out lyrics that are consistently worth tuning into (“Mirror mirror on the wall, will I pass out in the bathroom stall?”). During Watering The Well’s intro, disparate instrumental parts teeter on the edge of derailment before locking in–show-offs!
“Every day starts off the same/I wake up looking for my brain/ HEY!”–standout track Curb Feelers, which is tailor-made for the mosh, will knock you sideways: it’s stacks-on from the get-go, with gnarly riffs firing up just before the 10-second mark, and sleigh-bell percussion adds madness to the mayhem. Come the chorus, guitars recreate sirens, Brad Magers’ crawling bassline dominates (that’s some rapidfire fingering!) and it’s all underscored by cymbal-heavy drum demolition plus Caughthran’s repeated plea, delivered with appropriate urgency, “Someone call/911!” Peace Pipe follows and sounds mellow by comparison, although it still thrashes: “We’re standing in the graveyard/But you’re whistling … Are you just gonna keep singing the same song/Until the reaper comes along?”
As soon as you press play, everything intensifies so be sure to keep on eye on that speedo if listening while driving is your preference.
Melodic gang BV’s during the catchy-as-hell High Five–which also features some LOL-worthy rhyming: “persona”, “Arizona”, “walking coma –add playfulness. Elsewhere, Mexican Summer’s carnivalesque, topsy-turvy riffs are thrilling beyond belief and an unexpected lyrical twist during Breaking News (“Breaking news/Nobody cares/If you die”) will knock you for six. Although Castillo drives some cracking tempos throughout Bronx VI, the band has zero trouble keeping up. As soon as you press play, everything intensifies so be sure to keep on eye on that speedo if listening while driving is your preference.
STANDOUT TRACKS: Watering The Well, Curb Feelers, High Five.
STICK THIS NEXT TO: Queens Of The Stone Age, Hot Snakes, Gallows.