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Sunday, 22 March 2015

Reviews: Motor Sister, My Wooden Pillow, Kamasupazundown

Motor Sister: Ride (Metal Blade)

Motor Sister is band formed by Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian as a 50th birthday present to himself. The idea was to ask members of one of his favourite bands Mother Superior to come and jam some of their songs with him. The only member that did was guitarist/vocalist Jim Wilson who previously collaborated with Ian and his wife Pearl, on her debut solo album. Pearl also appears on this album to adding to Wilson's blues soaked vocal while Armoured Saint/Fates Warning bassist Joey Vera and Exodus/Testament drummer John Tempesta handle the rhythm section. So is this more than just a vanity project for Mr Ian? Well yes and no he has managed to recruit a great band to help Wilson re-record his own songs and with Ian's chugging rhythm guitar playing the songs are a lot more muscular than the originals, see A Hole which sounds like Anthrax with it's thrash riffage, obviously the inclusion of Wilson on the project moves this up from a covers album as you can't technically cover your own songs and it's not really a reinterpretation as the songs stick rather rigidly to the originals (albeit a little heavier) so the point of this album is a little lost, one can only decipher that Ian made this for his own gratification and also to highlight the work of one America's underground bands. Still the songs burst with energy with Wilson's husky vocals giving pathos to every song see the soulful blues of Fool Around and his solos tearing the roof off (This Song Reminds Me Of You), Pearl provides some old school female accompaniment with her great voice, which I'd personally like to hear more of, the rhythm section is tight, muscular and buoyed by their collective experience and their camaraderie after years of touring history together. So a good but a little throwaway to be honest as it really doesn't serve much of  purpose artistically but it is fun album for fans of Scott Ian, Mother Superior or indeed fans of bluesy hard rock. 7/10        

My Wooden Pillow: Uncomfortable (Self Released)

Manchester's My Wooden Pillow are a four piece death/groove metal band that draw from a huge amount of other influences to create their sound. Uncomfortable is their newest EP and it is full of breakneck riffs, snarling vocals and lashings of attitude. The Line is a thrashy, almost Arch Enemy style track which shows off the evil growls of frontwoman Michelle, who also gives a fine clean vocal performance on Call For War a political clarion call backed by some groove metal styled backing from Hassan (guitar), Patrick (bass) and Chris (drums) all of whom play with style and class, Call For War is one of the highlights of this four track EP as it reveals the bands heavy and also melodic style. Decapitalist harks to death metal with it's blast beats and relentless guitar work. All in all MWP have sculpted a great little slice of metallic fury with four tracks of quality metal music. 7/10 

Kamasupazundown: Blueprint (Self Released)

A two man QOTSA? This seems to be what this Welsh band are aiming for with their brand of scuzzy, fuzzy desert rock. Blueprint is the band's second album their first being One Minute Silence and it continues in the vein of their debut by fusing odd riffs from Mark Pitts with the unusual drum patterns Steven Rowlands. The band are deep rooted in the Kyuss, QOTSA vibe of music especially with Pitts' Homme-esque vocal drawl, he heightens this comparison with the smae kind of harmonic backing vocals Homme uses on the Queens... records. The first two tracks Stereotypical and Self Committed Crime are pure Rated-R with Who Am I adding a funky vibe and the title track has a great stop start riff and is driven like all the tracks by Rowland's superb drumming. Things get weird on Envy In His Eyes before Wrath Of Beauty goes a bit disco with some Nile Rodgers like guitar playing and Strange Tides is a fantastic song with a hazy vibe throughout evoking the sun and lazy days. Kamasupazundown not only have the most complicated band name in the world but they also have got a great second album in the bag that is top quality Desert rock and as the brass fuelled Last Goodbye ends your head doesn't stop nodding along with the great sounds contained here within. A great album from talented, yet relatively unknown band from Wales, hopefully this album will redress the balance. 8/10

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