Barb Wire Dolls

Recent Motorhead Music signings Barb Wire Dolls have a new LP out simply entitled “Desperate”, and we at RR have had the pleasure of an early listen! The album opens with the stunning new single “Drown”; a sleazy, hard-hitting number with a clangy bass and anthemic; in yer face vocal. Strong clear and audible, that vocal is delivered powerfully and passionately. The guitars are equally clangy and heavy, notably in the mid-section but the bass is the main component. Those cymbal-led drums in the background keep the beat but as openers go they set the bar high.

“Surreal” contains more than a heavy dollop of Nirvana’s “In Bloom” in the intro and at points throughout, but is unique enough to call their own. The heavy, cymbal-led opening and once again clangy bass; albeit slower, explodes into life during the chorus. The guitars fight for space with an overwhelming bass; with some huge hitting throughout, while the sharp ending works well for me. “Take Me Home” reminds me of “The Skids” in the guitars before that vocal kicks in. In fact that trademark Stuart Adamson sound can be heard throughout, the song has that whole Post/Punk, new wave feel to it. Hard hitting in places, accelerating to the end the lyrics and content are clear for all to hear.

“Heart Attack” is altogether faster and heavier, needing a breather mid-song! A direct, angry vocal that reminds me of Breaking Glass-era Hazel O’Connor it’s a Punk song in its purest form. Again the bass comes to the fore with some equally ferocious hitting, behind an angry yet anthemic voice. “Desperate” begins with a soft vocal and some rat-a-tat cymbal tapping, before livening up somewhat. The lyrics are heartfelt and passionately delivered, while the drums are the overriding feature. The song livens up in the chorus(es) while the vocals rise to shrieking towards the end as it goes up a gear. Grog Rox (Die So Fluid) comes to mind but it’s a vocal style much copied by many a band.

Barb Wire Dolls

“Blind To You” opens with a short acoustic guitar section that simply explodes into life. It returns to a simpler, bassy part that is paired with a ‘deeper’ vocal and more intricate percussion. It’s a mish-mash of a song that canít decide whether to be slow or fast! The ending however just grows and grows-louder, stronger and heavier. “I Will Sail” is much slower and mellower. A brutally honest vocal delivery before those drums and guitars kick in, it’s a moody and gloomy song with a nautical theme I’m guessing?!

“Darby Crash” reminds me of Green Day in the intro before the classic female Punk vocal style takes over. It’s snotty, angry and direct while fighting for space with that bass. There are elements of Zeppelin/Green Day/Hole to name 3, but one could pick from many influences. “Problem of T…..” is once again bass-heavy with some throwaway lyrics, with big hitting and big guitars to match. I am somewhat lost and confused regarding the song’s title though.

The album closes with “Rhythm Method” and it’s back to basics musically with vocals to match. As before the bass is as strong as ever with some ‘stretched’ chords and intricate notes.

There are far too many influences here for me to say Barb Wire Dolls are going achieve world domination. However, all the component parts are there and they have enough about them to go some way in the Punk/Metal/Grunge scene. New single “Drown” is the standout track here and despite them not blowing this reviewer away, I see no reason why they won’t be included on some large festival stages in the UK very soon. I shall watch with interest.

Track Listing
Take Me Home
Heart Attack
Blind To You
I Will Sail
Darby Crash
Problem of T…
Rhythm Method


Review by Ross A. Ferrone

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