(DIO Records, 2011):
Charmboy’s new CD offering “Let It Feed” is a time capsule of unapologetic guitar rock, born of the true golden age of Rock and Roll. Guitarist Eric Halder penned and sings lead on eight of the nine tracks, with a vocal style that is part spoken-word, not unlike Jimi Hendrix or Phil Lynott. I suspect it is an intentional nod. In the tradition of rocking power trios, the rhythm section is tight, fueled by the rock steady beat of drummer Scott Smith, along with the soulful, flowing and heavy bass lines of baby monster Sarah Clark, who adds backing vocals as well. Riding shotgun with a banshee wail of a guitar sound is Halder, and at his hand, notes get bent, tones get distorted and volumes pushed.
From the opening guitar salvo of the lead track “Home,” unflinching, yet dark retro-rock is afoot. The stand-out track, “Werewolves,” bemoans the coming of the next full moon, and the curse it brings. A sense of urgency is palpable in “The 18” with the catchy refrain, “18 minutes,” on repeat. One can play spot-the-influences on nearly every track – Alice Cooper in “The Rebound,” the Beatles in the instrumental “Dawn at the Peoples Temple,” bits and piece of Sabbath and Zeppelin, a healthy dose of Thin Lizzy, Bowie’s Spiders and the Yardbirds swirl around with reckless abandon.
One can’t help but get the feeling that “Let It Feed” would feel more at home affixed to a 12” piece of wax with a 1972 copyright – yet another sterling Ryan Slowey production, proving himself a jack of all genres.
Charmboy celebrates the release of “Let It Feed,” with a night of loud, original rock at 8pm on Saturday (June 4) at Valentine’s Music Hall in Albany. They’ll be joined by the like-minded Charlie Watts Riots and Alta Mira. $5 gets you in the door, and another $5 gets you a copy of the CD. Cheap.
Review by Matt Mac Haffie