The Black Bullets: Thirteens – EP review
This is a band made up of two punk rockers and two heavy-metal-heads who’ve swapped ideas and gone for it, hell for leather. Motorhead are the oh-so-fuckin’ obvious ideal, they cover Killed By Death to perfection live, but the Bullets seem to be going for an Amphetamine-powered Thin Lizzy-without-the-ballads kinda sound. Instead of his slurred, spat-out Stiv Bators-style punk vocalising of yore, Rob Castle has started to sing! And by-an-accident-of-nature, rather than by design, he actually does sound a bit like Phil Lynott.
“Twenty three oh six! Here comes the apocalypse..” The Four Horsemen are nigh. They wear leather and denim, their skin heavily decorated with ink, their hair as wild as their eyes and their veins flowing with liquor and the noise they make…. filthy, hard and fast rock’n’roll as loud as thunder. They ride Harleys and have guitars slung over their backs… they are the Black Bullets.
The most immediate song of the four, My Priest has a line where Rob Castle croaks ominously “ Only the Snake smells Fear,” The last word is pronounced Fea-uurrgh!
Like I said once before quoting Rowland S Howard, “A cliché is a very powerful thing indeed when its used properly”. The Black Bullets are Rock’n’roll Cliché Personified and are a pure unholy joy to watch, listen to and write about!
They look like a gang for starters. But with four distinct personalities vying for your attention, Carl Donoghue, demon drummerman with borstal-boy haircut, a hard as nails henchman look. Stevie Pearce, virtuoso guitar-hero & ladies man, rock star hair & shades. Jim Bones, gurning bass player, hyperactive tattoo-ed Mohawk poser and Rob “Fuckin’ Castle, skinny, wasted Wildman sex-god singer & guitar-abuser, a legend on two-wheels who walks it, talks it and throws-up on it…. .
The four new songs are a definite progression on the first EP, My Priest destined to be most peoples favourite, but the slightly slower, Untitled, (You’ll be my Soul Operator) is the one which heralds the future with its melody and power combination.
The intonation when Castle sings, “You-will-be my soul op-er-ator” is pure Lynott before seamlessly switching to the Iggy-esque “penetrate my mind”
Lead track Thirteens is a bit of I Hate To Say I Told You So mixed in with Decline of Western Civilisation Part 2 abandon and a Tygers of Pan Tang sheen.
How High is Nightmare on Elm Street Metal which needs to soundtrack a blood-spurtin’ Zombie Movie.
“I sniff, I swallow, don’t care if I wake up tomorrow” …is another great, nihilistic couplet from the poison pen of Castle and his vivid rock’n’roll poetry.
Too Loaded For Love from the first EP makes another appearance, simply because its f’kin amazing; the song that will ressurect the boogie in hard-rock circles and is as much of a mission statement as it is a self-fulfilling prophesy!
This is the best demonic, sleazeball Rock’n’Roll EP since their previous one. The Black Bullets are dark masters of their art and 2013 will see them getting better and better until every Rock’n’Roll lover in the country knows their name.
That’s R’n’R as in “Born A Rocker Die a Rocker” Punk and Heavy “Like Your Fucking Brain!” Metal.
Next gig: Friday 5th April – the 100 Club, Oxford St, London tickets
And in August 2013 the Bullets play “LA and the West Coast of the US of fuckin’A!” we are told.