Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The Balconies: "Fast Motions" (album review)

...and the prize for the first album to blow my doors off in 2014 goes to Toronto rock trio The Balconies.  They drop their stellar new record, Fast Motions, on January 28th.

Things start off with a bang with the blistering, high octane "Boys & Girls".  The cut has lead singer Jacquie rocking your ass with the confidence and bravado of a new millennium Joan Jett.  The record rarely let's up from there.  Her vocals boom through "I Know You're Right", but the rest of the band prove more than capable of keeping up with her.

On the slashing aural blitzkreig "Kill Count", it's easy to close your eyes and envision the strobes.  The delightful "Do It In The Dark" features just enough tinge of hair metal to make it irresistible.

The trio opt to go the smoldering route on the visceral lead-off single "The Slo".  They do so again on the sultry title track, this time though, it slowly evolves into total bombast.

There are a couple of lulls in the record.  "Good & Ugly" is an example of a band being a bit too enthusiastic as the lack of restraint makes it a messy listen.  "Beating Your Heart" is a mid-tempo toss off, that serves to give the listener a bit of a respite from the intense ride.

I've always been a fan of the band wrapping things up with a change of pace.  That's exactly what The Balconies do with "Let Me Go".  It's a subdued and sombre number that even boast a "Civil War"-style whistle.

When all is said and done, Fast Motions is more than enough to satisfy even the most hardcore rock adrenaline junkie.

The Balconies play Lee's Palace in Toronto on February 1st.

Best tracks: "Boys & Girls", "Fast Motions"

Track listing for Fast Motions:
  • Boys & Girls
  • I Know You're Right
  • Good & Ugly
  • Moving Parts
  • The Slo
  • Kill Count
  • Beating Your Heart
  • Fast Motions
  • Do It In The Dark
  • Let Me Go

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