Thursday, March 24, 2016

The Phoenix-My Turn To Deal

Demon Doll Records

Formed back in March of 2011 (and citing bands such as Crucified Barbara, Halestorm, and Velvet Revolver as their primary influences*), The Phoenix is a up-and-coming Italian band whose sound & style splits the difference between heavy rock and hard rock/heavy metal. The recently-released "My Turn To Deal" is the first studio recording  from this young band that is made up of rhythm guitarist/vocalist Alice Schecter, lead guitarist/vocalist Lena McFrison, bassist/vocalist Luna Rocket Queen, and drummer Giuli Mousse. This short but solid EP was recorded by Danger Zone's one and only Roberto Priori (!) and it features four songs including the uncompromising title track. The other three songs on "My Turn To Deal" are "Dangerous Girl", "You Can't Stop The Rock 'N' Roll", and "Party Hard". While the beer-soaked "My Turn To Deal" and this EP's wicked fun closing number, "Party Hard" showcase the more laid back/garage band approach of this talented quartet (read: These two tracks put the rock in rock and roll and they rock hard!) the other two tracks on The Phoenix's debut differ in that they offer technical leads in place of punk rock enthusiasm. "Dangerous Girl" (which sadly doesn't live up to it's title) moves matters into power rock/melodic metal territory and for it is (a way to show off the mad lead skills of Lena McFrison) it does work. Meanwhile "You Can't Stop The Rock 'N' Roll" (which unfortunately does not live up to it's name either!) is savvy and a wee bit sassy with all kinds of guitar techniques on display. Even though these two songs are more well-thought out and better-structured they lack the carefree attitude of "My Turn To Deal" and "Party Hard". On one hand it is good to see a band that offers variety. That really isn't something to complain about. But if we're to be completely truthful here (and why shouldn't we be?) this EP has an odd vibe to it and in the end the age-old saying "sometimes less is more" really comes into play. In essence "My Turn To Deal" features two separate versions of this all-female band and for better or worse one side is more appealing than the other. With time this can all be evened out so I really do look forward to hearing more from this Italian heavy rock/hard & heavy band down the line.

*In reality The Poenix is influenced by not just those three previously-mentioned acts, but anyone and everyone from (early) Mötley Crüe, Guns N' Roses, Hanoi Rocks, New York Dolls, and Kiss to The Ramones, Foo Fighters, Girlschool, The Misfits, and The Runaways!)

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