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Redrocks: Supernova

A new band from France and one in flux, with the lead singer of Redrocks having departed after this debut full length effort, which follows on from an initial EP offering. Early observers suggested that Redrocks possibly had a fixation with Porcupine Tree and while some of those flavours remain (the odd feeling of desperation and piano led introspection), what Redrocks set out is a reasonably different beast. Electro-dance beats in the same mould as Muse, commercialism that would suggest real cross over potential and the fragile anguish which The Pineapple Thief have revelled in on recent releases all making regular appearances and while aspects of Supernova are a little progressive, they sure ain't Prog.

That's not to suggest that serious rockers won't find interest here, with much of the ten tracks (one being marked out as "bonus", whatever that means these days) containing sparkling synth runs, waves of atmosphere and cutting guitars. That it also houses a lot of synthetic rhythmical work and thumping bass drums however may prove a challenge for some. Although if Muse have in recent times failed to shake you off with their cross genre dalliances, then this will be no stumbling block. "Beast Me" thunders on a thunk of bass drums, hi-hat chicking and swishing with intent. All the while vocals are spat out and left reeling, while the guitar cascades across the entire landscape. It is intense and the album highlight. Following that is difficult, the whine of despair arriving as "Maze" struggles to live up to expectations, while being far from bad. However "Maniac" broods and bothers in a far more believable, if no less overwrought style. Vocally that's not to say that that a full force warble may not be too much for some to fully engage with.

Synthing for all it's worth, the album's opening title track is as Muse as you could like, interestingly threatening, if hardly essential, although it does stick in the mind, while oddly the bonus track "Cosmic Dream" proves a highlight, with a surprising Nik Kershaw like vocal and dancing keyboards happy to bounce off the drums and underused harmony vocals. Making a smooth and effective ending to an album that doesn't particularly show this trait elsewhere.

Keeping in mind that Supernova is a debut offering and keeping in mind that Redrocks haven't really found their own identity yet, this is a reasonably promising set of songs and one which does suggest that any follow up could be rather interesting.

Track Listing
1. Supernova
2. Call In The Air
3. Complaint
4. Beast Me
5. Maze
6. Maniac
7. Ghost Driving
8. Better Be Blind
9. Tides
10. Cosmic Dream

Added: September 21st 2013
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Redrocks Online
Hits: 1610
Language: english

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