Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Soul Bomb!

These guys hail from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, and they are exploding onto the alternative, hard-rock scene with the sneer of AFI and the grit of Creed.
Comprising members Ian Bouchard (lead vocals and guitar and co-founder), Paul "Laffy" Lafreniere (guitar and vocals), original bassist and band co-founder Mathieu "Math" Menard, and Nicolas Grant (drums), Soul Bomb delivers an intoxicating blend of cold, techno sounds married to sharp alternative guitar riffs.
The first song I listen to by these bombastic rockers is "Tragedy," off their new upcoming album. Starting with a strong drumbeat, and a heart-pumping bass from Menard, "Tragedy" then launches into an anthemic chorus cut by a great keyboard and killer guitar riffing by Bouchard and Laffy. Bouchard's lead vocals pick at your ears with a hypnotic tone, then tear you apart when you reach the chorus, and when you least expect it. Perhaps even better than that is the thrown in Nine Inch Nails-like synth-beat, or the sick, face-melting guitar solo. God, it's killer solos like that that make me hyperventilate.
After "Tragedy" ends, it's on to "Broken Down Angel," a harsh, seemingly Metallica-inspired track with vocals that would make HIM and AFI jealous. I swear I hate myself for not writing this guitar riff; it's like my ears are drugged out and having epiphanies of their own. The drums on this are a little scaled back, but still "Keith Moon" enough to keep the song rockin' hard. A particular favorite part in this song for me happens around 2:25, when Bouchard and Laffy match guitar licks, just with one higher on the fretboard. The result? A killer, Metallica-like wall of sound.
The next song I won't spoil too much. "Zhang Philosophy" is just pure and simple a testament to face-melting alternative-metal guitar. It screams HIM and AFI, and the bass and drums remind me so much of Disturbed that it's a little creepy. And by the way, Lafreniere's guitar solo around 3:00 just serves to prove that metal is alive and well. I think Tipper Gore would have a heart attack.
I'm almost a little confused when the next track comes on, because it's so starkly different from the previous ones. It relies more on keyboards than the tracks before it, and the tempo is much slower; more hypnotic. It almost reminds me of Scorpions' "Still Loving You." "Crazy for Loving You" just sweeps you away in a hypnosis of sound, a trance of emotion. Bouchard's vocals on this are so slow, they convey an almost romantic effect that just sends chills up my spine.
Though "Asleep at the Wheel" and "Got to Get Away" are also amazing tracks, the last one I'm going to cover is "Distortion Girl," a punky-synthed out number that just screams club song. The vocals in this song have gone from hypnotic to straight-out creepy. And I love it. If that's not enough, though, try on the sleek synth-accompanied chorus for size. I swear, you'll be humming this all day to the point of it driving you up the wall. Brilliant. I tell ya, if I were a major label, I'd get my ass in gear and sign these guys quick before anyone else found out about them. Soul Bomb just finished their first full tour this past September in Ontario, with dates at Micky J's in Timmins on 9/10, The Townehouse in Sudbury on 9/12, and later at The Kathedral in Toronto on 9/20, and at The Legendary Red Rooster in Burlington on 9/23. These guys won't stay secret forever, and the guy who signs this Canada quartet is gonna feel like he won the lottery when he does. No doubt.

Sounds Like: HIM, AFI, Metallica, Creed, Nine Inch Nails

Key Tracks from Soul Bomb: "Tragedy," "Distortion Girl," "Broken Down Angel," Crazy for Loving You," "Zhang Philosophy," "Got to Get Away"

Check out Soul Bomb more at:

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