Beat the Meat
4/14/2004 - Review by: Frank Hill
For me, a unique sound sometimes works (System of a Down) and sometimes it doesn't work (Mr. Bungle).
During a school dance concert at the end of "Back to the Future", Michael J. Fox' character leaves the audience mouths agape by playing a guitar solo that was way ahead of it's time. On the EP "Beat the Meat", Danish band Volbeat flip-flops the idea by throwing in a 50's inluence that makes for an odd mix of guitar-heavy, greaser metal.
"Pool of Booze" starts out the disc with their prominent Godsmack/Load-era Metallica sound overlaid by a sneering Elvis delivery by vocalist Michael Poulsen. It's a little strange to hear and I think many will either like it or reject it altogether. "Boa" continues the vocal trend with an even better song behind it. Up to this point, they were only half into the vibe, but then the band goes completely back to the past with the terrific "Soulweeper". The vocals, the guitars, the tone and the arrangements are slicked back and turned up like Sha Na Na with a stack of Marshalls. It's continued through "Another Day" and the fuel-inspired, teenage-death "Danny & Lucy" until the band shows on "Alienized" that they can play standard metal.
I'd like to see this band go with either the full-on 50's metal approach or the non-50's sound. Maybe a release of each sans Opeth. Going half the way is a bit anemic to hitting any kind of niche, but in time they may just go beyond that.
1. Pool of booze
4. Another day
5. Danny & Lucy
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