Royal Blood
Royal Blood


3.0
good

Review

by Guzzo CONTRIBUTOR (25 Reviews)
September 3rd, 2014 | 38 replies


Release Date: 08/25/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: More Wolfmother than any other garage rock pioneer band you can think of.

It’s hard to make music nowadays that sounds unique. In fact, I would go as far as to say any aspiring rock band is rooted in some sort of tracks that have already been laid out before them by another band. That’s the problem with time, for as more time passes, more and more music gets released. So it isn’t coincidental for a band like Royal Blood to garner the type of comparisons that they do. However, there is a fine line between sounding like another band and wholeheartedly ripping off another band’s sound. While Royal Blood doesn’t exactly cross that line altogether, they do straddle it very closely.

One thing you will notice from the start of the LP is that Royal Blood brings energy. “Out of the Black” is led by a loud and pounding drum intro, followed by a stadium rock chorus that you will surely bob your head and sing in the shower to. It’s a fantastic intro to the album, if only because that sound you hear on “Out of the Black” is going to be repeated on almost every track from here on out, with the exception of the high energy drumming. The lead-bass intro/verse/chorus/verse/chorus/outro is run into the ground to full effect, with seemingly every song trying to “out-energy” the next. Bringing energy into garage rock is fantastic, don’t get me wrong. I love my garage-rock blues to be loud, however if you don’t at least mix up your sound a little bit, or try to come up with more than one or two interesting riffs, your energy will soon turn into boredom after a couple listens.

And that’s exactly what plagues Royal Blood’s entire first half; a lack of diversity. Thankfully, it picks up the slack in the second half. “Loose Change” starts with a slower paced riff and the tone of the bass isn’t quite a loud as previous tracks, but it’s the off-kilter drumming that is really on display. That is until the second half which gives the listener an explosive solo and fantastic drum fills. It’s the album’s first real attempt at building the momentum instead of trying to sprint out of the gates with energy, and it is done with such precision and intricacy that it makes you wonder why it took until the seventh track of the album for the band to showcase its ability to actually create a decent song structure. The following track, “Careless” abandons “Loose Change’s” interesting structure for more of familiar structure, but unlike the first half of the album it brings an interesting riff that follows throughout and near the end of the track features some great drum fills. This track’s instrumentals feel like an ode to early Blue Oyster Cult albums, and it’s all the better for it. Closer “Better Strangers” is the most head-scratching track on the album. The ever changing bass-guitar riff comes in and out of focus at all the right moments, and the drumming is perfectly solemn, making for a fantastic slow-burner of a blues rock track. It’s just another area where you can really see this Royal Blood’s potential, yet it makes you scratch your head as to wonder why they can’t put this time of effort into every one of their tracks.

Royal Blood’s self-titled debut is high energy, there is no disputing that. The problem lies in the fact the energy feels forced on you, rather than built and constructed through the craftsmanship of the instrumentals. Sure the immediacy of the energy is a thrill ride at first, but it’s just that; a thrill ride. Something that lasts only a few moments before it is over and you are onto something else. That’s not to say that the album is bad however, it’s just short on surprises. And when the surprises come, like on “Loose Change” and “Better Strangers,” you will find yourself pondering why they couldn’t spend just a little more time on the other eight tracks structure as well.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
JohnnyOnTheSpot
September 3rd 2014


767 Comments


definitely agree with this one a bit more than the other review, I gotta say.

good review man

Digging: Hammock - The Sleepover Series, Volume 2

Guzzo10
Contributing Reviewer
September 3rd 2014


1046 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Review #25. I guess that's like a milestone for me or something considering the rate at which I put out reviews.


Sigh, if only my days weren't mostly spent at college like they are now.

Guzzo10
Contributing Reviewer
September 3rd 2014


1046 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Thank you sir!

Arcade
Contributing Reviewer
September 3rd 2014


2543 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

yeah great review man, agree with your score far more. The decision to use bass obviously makes them significantly tighter and less noodly but at the end of the day it just feels like another good rock album

Digging: Aphex Twin - Syro

Guzzo10
Contributing Reviewer
September 3rd 2014


1046 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I wonder if I have "waited too long" for this to make front page huahuahuah. Thanks Jordan!

danielcardoso
September 3rd 2014


2238 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I don't agree on everything you said, but you still pointed out lots of aspects I also notice. Great review.

StKiyo
September 3rd 2014


83 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

The repetition is the charm of the album, but good review.

Digging: Death From Above 1979 - The Physical World

ExplosiveOranges
September 3rd 2014


2685 Comments


Yay, a Guzzo review! Still haven't checked this.

Digging: Leon Vynehall - Music For The Uninvited

Guzzo10
Contributing Reviewer
September 3rd 2014


1046 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

haha, hey man! You should give it a shot, for sure. Its a really fun album, even if its gets a bit boring after a few listens. Check out "Loose Change" and "Better Strangers" for their best stuff imo

danielcardoso
September 3rd 2014


2238 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Come On Over, Little Monster and Out Of The Black rule hard too.

danielcardoso
September 3rd 2014


2238 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Come On Over, Little Monster and Out Of The Black rule hard too.

Grizzlypyro
September 3rd 2014


149 Comments


Better than a 3, but review is seriously well written. Made me think twice about the score I'll eventually give it.

Digging: The Contortionist - Language

Guzzo10
Contributing Reviewer
September 4th 2014


1046 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

too much praise, you guys are inflating my ego stoppp.

for real though, thanks for all the compliments!

NorwichScene
September 4th 2014


1430 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

They sure do love QOTSA

Digging: Lonely the Brave - The Day's War

Mesm277
September 4th 2014


183 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Have to mention it's nice to see a genre such as this performing well commercially

slagun
September 4th 2014


709 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

opener rules

TheSupernatural
September 4th 2014


1181 Comments


I've only heard the EP, still gotta check out the full album

Digging: xSPONGEXCOREx - How Tough Are Yah?

danielcardoso
September 4th 2014


2238 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It's pretty cool.

Antonius
September 4th 2014


228 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

I don't agree on everything you said, but you still pointed out lots of aspects I also notice. Great review. [2]

Digging: Purson - The Circle and the Blue Door

danielcardoso
September 4th 2014


2238 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Hey Antonius, what's up? You've listened to Royal Blood yet?



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