The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

SWITCHBLADE SCARLETT

WHITE LINE FEVER

RETROSPECT RECORDS

2012

 

 

 

1.         Big Apple Baby
2.         White Line Fever
3.         Say Anything
4.         Heartbreaker
5.         Little Hearts
6.         Red Clay
7.         Party Girls (Can I Be Your Man)
8.         Gone
9.         Dirty Girl
10.        Lucielle
11.        Saigon Lullaby
12.        At Least The Rolling Stones Still Make Me Smile

 

 

 

Catching only part of Switchblade Scarlett’s set at Rocklahoma this year was a shame as from what I did see they looked to be a band that actually manages to bring something new to what has sadly become a pretty stylised genre. I’m also happy to confirm that ‘White Line Fever’is a great representation of what sounded like a great live band.

 

 

"Big Apple Baby" kicks off with a great guitar riff before what might be the most confronting aspect of the band kicks in: Shawn Perry’s vocals. I played the CD to Jo the other day and she actually thought that Switchblade Scarlett had two singers. On one hand you have a real sleazy ‘in your face’ vocal that comes across all Blackie Lawless (WASP) meets Dizzy Dean Davidson (Britny Fox) meets Bon Scott, but on other songs you have a more melodic hard rock vocal. Now for me it works and stylistically the vocals fit the songs, with Blackie/Dizzy being reserved for the sleazier fare. It’s ‘interesting’ to say the least and I actually think it works in the bands favour.

 

 

Now that we’ve established we have something nice and sleazy you’ll be surprised at how good an example of the genre this really is. Title track ‘White Line Fever’ ups the ‘Glam’ quota: it’s a solid, catchy song that would have you singing along at work if the chorus wasn’t about heroin. But it’s from here that things get even more interesting…

 

 

‘Say Anything’ is probably one of the most radio-friendly song on the CD and it’s here we get the more melodic vocal on a song that wouldn’t be out of place on one of the better late 80’s hair metal offerings. It works for me. ‘Little Hearts; is another more melodic song that works well and keeps creeping into my play-lists: It’s one of those songs that captures that feeling that the Summer’s finally here. All class.

 

 

Not many people cover Pat Benatar and when you hear ‘Heartbreaker’ you’ll wonder why – she’s a got a great back catalogue and the guys do her justice whilst managing to make it their own. 

 

 

Elsewhere the rocking ‘Party Girls’; the melodic ‘Gone’ (nice backing vocals on this album by the way guys) and ‘Lucielle’ all grab your attention. ‘Red Clay’ is an interesting song, slow, brooding and melodic and maybe a hint at another side to the band entirely. The only misstep for me is the ‘faux-country’ of ‘At Least The Rolling Stones Still Make Me Smile’ which whilst I appreciate the intention just isn’t a good enough song in this rather excellent company.

 

 

So much potential here – definitely a band to watch.

 

 

by Mark Diggins