It seems like a life time since the release of their last album, but ensuring that the wait is swiftly confined to being a distant memory, Canadian punkabilly duo The Black Frame Spectacle return with a new slab of ferocious rock ‘n’ roll in the shape of their self-titled EP. Uncaging four tracks of their trademark adrenaline driven rockabilly, the Ontario band has an even bigger roar and snarl to their sound than ever before. You know what you are going to get with the band in many ways but never in the shape and colour it is going to unleash its persuasion in, and on the new EP it is fair to say it is in their most impassioned and accomplished style yet.
The band consists of Dorchester/St Thomas hailing vocalist/guitarists Ian Sullivan and drummer/backing Adam McNeill vocalist, originally work colleagues from 2003 who united musically six years later. Their sound is a maelstrom of fifties rock ‘n’ roll, punk, rockabilly, and hard rock, with plenty more additives spicing things at varying times. It is an attention grabbing proposition which has earned the band’s two albums, Grady Sessions and especially Grady Sessions II, strong acclaim and increasingly broader spotlights, including radio play in the UK. The release of the single The Vow last year set down a tasty appetiser of things to come, the latest EP realising its suggestion and more with raw and undiluted sonic enthusiasm.
Opener 100th Monkey instantly has the listener on familiar ground yet within seconds there is a freshness and spice to the thumping stride and rhythmic march of the song. McNeill offers thumps as potent and anthemic as ever whilst Sullivan’s riffs are eager and slightly steely, which only adds to the always impressive impassioned vocal delivery he sends roaring through ears. The track broadens with every note and beat into a blaze of fifties bred rock ‘n’ roll complete with swinging hooks and a great unexpected surf wrapped, country shaded relaxation, which of course is only a breath’s worth of a pause before erupting back into the insatiable and irresistible charge it started with.
It is tremendous start quickly matched by Neverborn. Opening with a bluesy coaxing of guitar which just intoxicates senses and imaginations, the song leaps into a controlled but sinew crafted stroll with Sullivan laying his potent tones upon a more hard rock infused slice of rousing persuasion. Harmonies floating in the background of the tempestuous presence of the song, reveals more of the new adventure filling the invention of the band, an intriguing twist which does not distract from the heart of the great track but certainly earns keen attention.
The following This Train Ain’t Stoppin rattles down the EP’s tracks next where a hillbilly country flavouring merges with more traditional rockabilly tenacity as rhythms and hooks dig in with infectious and lingering revelry. Barely two minutes of sheer unbridled contagion, the song is simply what The Black Frame Spectacle does best, stomp with an energy and craft which crosses styles and decades.
As impressive here as on its original unveiling a few months back, The Vow brings the outstanding EP to a mighty close. It has a throaty edge to its opening guitar bait, a rawness which only intensifies as a scrub of riffs from Sullivan’s guitar explodes into another feverish romp driven by the hypnotic intrusive beats of McNeill. Catchier than a virus and just as hungrily virulent, the song is a creative agitation which refuses to leave until feet and passions are offering their own individual submissions.
The track is a glorious end to another inescapably impressive release from The Black Frame Spectacle. They with their EP again feed expectations and wants of their own sound, whilst pushing and stretching its borders just enough to be once more fresh and newly exciting. When will the world wake up to the band we have to wonder, especially fans of bands like Living End, The Peacocks, Th’ Legendary Shack Shakers, and even Volbeat.
The Black Frame Spectacle EP is available now @
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