Monday, October 16, 2017

Gothtober - the Haxans : 'Party Time"

Ash Costello from New Years Day is embracing her inner Mortica Addams . I fully support this is a good look for her, but as a sound it has interesting results that works in varying degrees. This album works best when it carries an almost 60s go-go rock n roll feel that it married to a more modern sound. When the sound of Modern radio rock creeps in it doesn't have the same charm. They begin to go further down this road by the third song "Dirty Magic" that finds them colliding with a sound that has more in common with Halestorm and In This Moment. When her voice goes up into more of rock n roll upper register is carries a Lita Ford like edge. Yes, this album is darker than her other band , though fairly upbeat for goth. Lyrically song like "Black Cat Bone" works with the music in a similar way that Rob Zombie's solo work does. As a lyricist she is not as creative as Zombie , but these songs are fun.

They cover 45 Grave's "Party Time",  which gets them points in my book. They dance all of the death rock out of it, but it was always a big dumb song. This album is a reminder of how much hinges on the production choices a band makes. Dialing back the distortion returns them to a creepier 60s styled sound. I think these moments more more original and give them more of a signature sound by filling a void that is not as crowded as the landscape of radio rock. The electronic elements do work on "Witch Wave". Its like if Lords of Acid decided to become more of a rock band. They switch decades and go in a more new wave direction on "I Think Of Demons", though it filtered through more of a modern pop lens. Lyrically it's a little weak, but otherwise well constructed. They get darker on "Professional Weirdo" once again embrace a more electronic side that recalls many of the bands wanting to be Nine Inch Nails from the 90s.

The vocals ride the beat more like a pop, so though it reminds me of a dancey version of the Donnas the way the guitar comes in. The lyrics to "Boo" are so silly it's hard to take the song seriously. The big 80s rock chorus is catchy despite this so you might find your self torn when it comes to this guilty pleasure. They close the album with a very toned down cover of the Misfit's "Vampira" . I'll give this album a 9 it's a lot of fun, not the darkest thing to come out this October, but good background music for a party.

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