Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Album Review: Sinner - Tequila Suicide

Mat Sinner has seemingly been around forever, and done everything. He's a member of Primal Fear, he's written songs for other projects like Kiske/Somerville, all the while he's fronted his own rock band during his 'down' time. Sinner has never gotten the same amount of attention as a lot of his other projects, even though it's the longest running. I would guess it has something to do with what is viewed as his 'main' priority, but that debate doesn't have anything to do with the music Sinner is putting forward here.

Compared to his other projects, Sinner is the more stripped-down, meat and potatoes rock and roll band. "Go Down Fighting" opens the album in this spirit, a less than three minute burst of rock and roll that's light on riffs, but heavy on the drinking, partying spirit. Sure, I don't relate one bit to lyrics bout getting drunk and raising hell, but the song is trying to be a burst of fun, and it succeeds at that end.

The title track of the album is even better, plowing through the simple song to get to the catchy chorus, which is sung with a laid-back air that works against the bounce of the track. That's not a criticism, as the slight tension it creates is the kind of little detail that makes a simple song work even better. The best thing about meat and potatoes rock is also what makes it problematic. The music can be so simple and straight-forward that you know what you're getting from a song after the first twenty seconds. Fortunately, Sinner isn't going to let the entire album fall into that trap.

Things get switched up just enough from track to track to give the songs their own identities. "Road To Hell" has a feeling that comes from a Black Star Riders album, only better than their effort from this year. Then we get a slightly egotistical number in "Sinner Blues", which is a blues and gospel flavored track that serves the purpose of a ballad, giving the album some time to breathe.

So does "Tequila Suicide" make a statement as an essential album you need to add to your collection? Well, if we're being honest, no, it doesn't. But that doesn't mean anything, since that isn't the aim here. Sinner is out to have a little fun and play some good ol' rock music. That achieve that goal easily. "Tequila Suicide" doesn't have any firecrackers in the track listing that are going to stand out as classics, but it's a compact little album that can be the soundtrack for some fun times. It's good music. That's enough for me.

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