Electric Black – The Calm Before

With the amount of classic rock inspired bands coming out of both the States and Canada over the past fifteen or so years, it was only a matter of time before we saw something similar here in the UK. 

Electric Black aims to fill that void, with the cool and old school style. Taking queues such as shredding guitar solos, and clear but twanging vocals that make for that easy-going feeling. 

Love Is a Light (For The Lost) opens with a deceivingly soft style before transitioning into a deep bass that immediately shows the confidence and attitude Electric Black wear on their sleeves. 

Shoot for the sun is the next offering and brings in a fast tempo with an excellent solo, that seems to permeate a lot of what Electric Black is shooting for. The old ideal of rock and roll is right at home here, with the message of being on the run and acting as a free spirit. 

The slower paced track, Eagle feels a little more like a ballad than the first two tracks, though its lyrical content is something else entirely. It’s here where the influence of US bands are on full display, (not taking into account the bald eagle on the album’s cover) with the line “you can’t clip the wings of the eagle”. The music reflects this with a bluesy, downbeat feel that’s slightly melancholic and a little longing. It feels like a great centrepiece to anchor the LP. 

Gravity, Build It and They Will Come, both follow the lead of the opening tracks, once again blending that fun down and dirty American style of blues-rock and guitar solos. The latter has a particularly crunchy solo that’s backed by a thumping bass tune that gets the blood pumping at a very nice pace. 

Thrill of The Chase carries a little more bite and grit, describing an 18-year old girl being the object of affection for our singer. Whilst coming of as a little edgy, it never oversteps into creepy territory, despite coming precariously close. “She’ll wanna wake up beside me” is probably the most loaded line on the entire album given the context. Luckily it never takes it too far, like KISS’s track Love Gun. 

Electric Black even begin to show some country influence with Homecoming, the guitars, cooing backing vocals and lyrical content all cement it into a genre song that’s fit to burst with how much style is on display. 

Too Much Water goes back into the more familiar territory, the crunchy riffs complimenting the lyrics that describe a rough one-sided break up. Once again we’re treated to a shredding guitar in the back half to keep up the excitement. 

Having the title track act as an intro for your closing track is a bold choice, but The Calm Before makes amazing use of violins and cellos in it’s brief stint. As Not Afraid to Die opens it’s immediately the heaviest song so far, a post-grunge track that’s mean to the core. Despite the heaviness, it takes an interesting and brave turn, showing a soft side midway through. There’s a distinct dichotomy on the track that shows how much range Electric Black truly have. 

A bonus live track, Forever Without The Fight is the unofficial ending. Whilst it’s a great showcase of what Electric Black can do live, showing that they fake nothing and sound just as good (if not better) live. The issue is that it softens the impact slightly of Not Afraid to Die, which is the strongest track on the whole LP. 

Overall Electric Black, carry a lot of inspirations on their shoulders, and fans of genres such as country, hard rock, and post-grunge would be right at home listening to this album. With a lot of originality on show, Electric Black show a maturity and well-rounded style that deserves a lot of attention from the rock community as a whole.