Saturday, 26 January 2013
Review: Mallory Knox - Signals
But delivering powerful emotion is something that comes as a second nature to this band, as they handle it so effortlessly. At their most aggressive, like in Wake Up, with it's intro echoing Beastie Boys' Sabotage and the massively built up title track, the band display a more melodic and personal take on the sound of the now officially departed Alexisonfire, while 1949 is a textbook work of awesome balladry that leaves listeners with some faith in life as Chapman effortlessly delivers his song from the point of view of an old man that still feels a passionate love for his wife he met in 1949. It is a triumph of songwriting.
Of course, 1949 resembles the turning point in Signals if you will. Before then there is some questioning to be had about Chapman as a frontman. His vocals are so clean cut and it takes a while for any personality to really come out at first, unlike the immediate kind of recognizable tone you could find in listening to Young Guns or Lower Than Atlantis and sound more suited for a band like Fall Out Boy, (A band, who if today's official reunion rumours are true, I will be trying to get tickets for the subsequent UK Tour. And what?) however, it's that fifth track, where his performances becomes that bit more confident and growing in identity, and from there, he leads all proceedings on the album with enough confidence to deliver a smooth blues ballad for a rough generation on Bury Your Head, which at first, I was hoping to be a mindless chug-fest in tribute to Bury Your Dead, however this song does a too great job in carrying a sense of modern day class, for it to become a real problem.
There's little else to make about this album, other than, in what seems to be a rare case these days, a rock band that has been massively built up by various forms of press and our occasional buddies at Radio 1 are actually really worth listening to and do a great job of proving that the very traditional songwriting method still carries a high amount of relevance in a world where everyone believes that everything has been done before. Mallory Knox undoubtedly put everything they have into Signals and you can feel the outbursts of emotion they have with each soaring chorus, all of which need to be learnt by all gig visitors to make up what will be a hell of a night for each show. May the Empire of British rock stand eternally.
Mallory Knox's Signals is out now via A Wolf at Your Door. The band will tour the UK in February with Don Broco and Hey Vanity.