Its title is Loud Hard Fast and that just about sums up the new EP from UK rockers Bulletproof Rose, though to that you can add enjoyable if unsurprising. That lack of originality is not necessarily a bad thing in the hands of strong musicians and it is fair to say that the Cumbria quartet is that, and certain familiarity bred from inspirations can often add a captivating essence to songs, which again generally applies here, but for long term and potent persuasion on a national appetite will it be enough for Bulletproof Rose to make a breakthrough we have to wonder.
Hailing from Workington and formed in 2012 with the current line-up uniting last year, Bulletproof Rose has certainly bred a mighty reputation for their live performances and tenacious rock ‘n’ roll locally, spreading further afield in recent times. Drawing on influences like AC/DC, Guns N Roses, and Motley Crue, all open from the first breath of the EP, the band is on a steady rise which Loud Hard Fast can only reinforce, though by how much time will tell.
The song Bulletproof Rose sets the riot rolling, the guitars of Jacob Siddle and Brian Robinson ruffling air and ears with raucous, if restrained riffs as the heavy jabs of drummer Dan Wallace punctuate their caustic tempting. The song is soon into a captivating and more predatory stroll though, the bass of Dane Riach adding throaty enticement as the vocals of Siddle bring their roar into play. Feet and emotions are soon fully engaged by this point, the thumping antagonism of rock ‘n’ roll and fevered energy an easy contagion to be infected by whilst the soaring solos work on the imagination. As suggested earlier there is little to surprise in the band’s sound and subsequently song but it still provides a heavily engaging proposal that feet and satisfaction cannot turn down
The following Gypsy explores a blues/classic rock landscape with fiery riffs and strong armed rhythms. It is a song growing in strength as the intensity aggressively rises within the song but in turn losing a little of that potency when relaxing around moments of melodic and sonic enterprise as band vocal calls try to being an anthemic climate into play. There is certainly the spark of its predecessor lacking in the song but has enough to involve voice and appetite before making way for My Girl. Immediately there is a rawer volatile punk essence and attitude to the song, riffs and beats adding more of a snarl to their presence matched by the impressing voice of Siddle. Expectations are barely challenged across the song but it is another occasion where a juicy and inventive solo aligned to raucous exploits easily compensate.
Bang Your Head is the same, familiarity soaking every aspect but countered by an anthemic roar, the strongest moment on the EP in that respect, and the infectiousness fuelling the encounter. It’s most potent weaponry though is the outstanding guitar prowess igniting the song, especially in a twin solo strike. In some ways the rest of the song cannot quite back this up but again as feet and voice are fully recruited to its cause, there is no doubting that the song provides a fun and pleasing time.
The EP ends with its title track, a song opening on a great seventies rock n’ roll riff which is as much glam, a la Sweet, as it is dirty, i.e. Motorhead. Riffs and rhythms simply gnaw and pound away at the senses, whilst vocally Siddle offers a punkish tone which only adds to the irresistible theatre of rock ‘n’ roll romping with the listener. The downing of aggression for a calmer passage does not quite work for personal tastes, its predacious prowling good but defused by the distance from it guitars are taken by the production, though it all evens out again before the song ends on a highly appetising finale crafted by the impressive and thrilling enterprise of Siddle and Robinson.
It would be wrong to say that enjoyment with Loud Hard Fast was anything but full and as a first introduction to Bulletproof Rose it is a pleasing proposition from a band with some mean creative and technical skills. For real originality and surprises though we will have to wait and hope they are next on the agenda for the band.
The Loud Hard Fast EP is available from 27th April from all digital stores.
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