The Amazing Snakeheads: Amphetamine Ballads (Domino)
Ltd LP / CD / DL
Due Out 14th of April
The Amazing Snakeheads – they’re loud, they’re angry, they’re from Glasgow and Lee Hammond thinks they’re great.
The Amazing Snakeheads are an awesome new band from Glasgow and having recently signed to indie behemoth Domino Records, I have no option but to expect big things from these Glaswegians. Opening up with a huge gong on I’m A Vampire the band set out their stall, heavy blues rock with a thick Glaswegian accent, what more could you want from a new band.
Whilst perhaps not the most complex music you’re ever likely to hear, this album is a beast conceived in Glasgow’s seedy underground scene and it shows. Thick basslines and a singer with a voice filled with pure anger and grit, and with some pretty disturbing themes that run throughout the album. It’s hard to switch it off as The Amazing Snakeheads drag you deeper into their world.
They often try to lure you into a false sense of security with more delicate openings to tracks particularly Here It Comes Again. It builds rather slowly before a piercing noise attacks the track as singer Dale Barclay screeches Here It Comes Again!
To think this is one of the quieter moments of the album few bands fail to reach this level of noise in an entire album, let alone maintain such power throughout the album. However, the band is at their best when they’re at their quietest with Every Guy Wants To Be Her Baby.
This is without doubt the stand out track on the album heavy blues-rock and the amazingly raw vocals that adorn every track on this brilliant album. Here though to begin with everything is stripped away allowing the listener to benefit from the deep angst filled lyrics. You can feel your own face twist and sneer as you hear the grit in Dale’s voice.
Flatlining retains the noise level whilst being somewhat slower and deliberate, this track has purpose singer Dale’s voice again filled with anger as he chants Feel The Fire In Me. The added layers of instrumentation the saxophone and the harmonica pad out the track, but it maintains the slower speed and the deliberate feel to it.
It is no surprise that Domino snapped these guys up as they have awesome power. Amphetamine Ballads is a fitting debut and is amazing in every way. Its left me waiting with bated breath for what this band have to offer live. On record they’re truly thrilling and I can only imagine the live experience to be even better. Fortunately for me the band are about to go on tour throughout the end of April and into May, and I for sure will be there to witness it.
All words by Lee Hammond.