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Skull Branded Pirates: An Oath Sworn On Broken Bones

Avast ye scurvy bunch and set the main sail for some full on Pirate Metal nonsense from one of the earliest purveyors of cutlass rattling riff smuggling this side of the skull an' crossbones. Now if that all sounds a little silly, rest assured it is! This second album, An Oath Sworn On Broken Bones, from the UK's Skull Branded Pirates being an album which unashamedly wants you to drain your flagon of ale and raise a smile while banging your head to some convincing traditional metal. Lyrically things veer into the intentionally ridiculous, with tales of booty plundered, wenches conquered and battles won, all delivered by Captain One-Ayed Wilson (c'mon you didn't expect anyone in this band to be called Derek or Clive did you?) in suitably "Arrrrrrrrr Jimmmm Laaaaaad" style. If you are looking for a seriously minded take on society's ills, may I suggest you set your course for another coast. However if the quaint little ditty of "Straight Outta Kingston (Doin' It For The Booty)" can't raise a smile with poignant lyrics such as

"...No Slack, or I'll be pumping cold steel. All Night,
When I'll be slapping my balls against the pride of the town who moans like a whore,
She'll be spittin' my grit, but I'm an honourable fella,
So I tell her nothing's better than a suck of my fella to quell a gentleman of fortune"

then you're a taking this (and yourself) too seriously. That said the very fact that it is delivered in a style that can only be described as Pi-RAP Metal only raises the comedy aspect further. Elsewhere the music is a tight mix of Maiden like twin guitar stabs and something a little more Gothenburg style. Although all the while the Pirate theme is rammed home through chanting shanty backing vocals, silly accents and accordion embellishments. In the wrong hands the results would be disastrous, but Skull Branded Pirates have the class and right mix of over the topness and instrumental skills to make the results highly enjoyable, if not exactly essential.

Live this lot must be an absolute hoot, with three pointed hats, eye patches and all manner of sharp weapons at their disposal to ram home their good time anthems. On CD the effect isn't quite so captivating, but as an undoubted and intentionally silly diversion there's no doubt that A Path Sworn On Broken Bones does exactly as it was intended to do rock with a big, rotten toothed grin.

Lock up your daughters, the Skull Branded Pirates are in town and on this evidence they ain't taking no prisoners!

Track Listing
1. 1684
2. Man The Cannons
3. Masters Of The Trade
4. The Ballad Of One-Tooth McGuyver
5. Skull Branded Pirates, Captain Dan & the Scurvy Crew - Straight Outta Kingston (Doin' It for the Booty)
6. An Oath Sworn On Broken Bones
7. The Three Trials
8. Free The Slaves
9. Drink'till'Dawn

Added: June 14th 2013
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Skull Branded Pirates on ReverbNation
Hits: 1951
Language: english

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