While dealing in a musical format that’s been done to death in the past – you know the one, where it all starts quiet and the guitars and vocals are kept turned down low before the inevitable stomp of the distortion pedals and a big chorus kicks in to rock your tiny little world, but there’s a gaping chasm between bands who do it it sublimely (The Pixies, Nirvana) and those who get it hideously WRONG (Puddle Of Mudd, Staind) – so its with a massive sigh of relief that Prince Of Lilies slot into that sublime category with striking grace. Of course, it helps that you’ve got the guy who practically pioneered the whole thing, Steve Albini at the controls – anyone who had anything to do with The Pixies’ Surfer Rosa, PJ Harveys’ Rid Of Me or Nirvanas’ In Utero has got to be a sure sign of quality, surely.
So as, “I Want To Know”, rumbles into view things pretty much play out as you’d expect. A deep bass rumble, some sweetly melodic vocals, a tentative drumbeat and then the expected slight pause before the guitars go apeshit, thrashing out those distorted powerchords and the vocals are screamed at full volume, then repeat to end. Yes, it’s predictable and yes you’ve heard it a thousand times before, but when a band gets it right it’s a glorious thing – and Prince Of Lilies get it spot on, letting the excitement and passion of their genuine enthusiasm shine through.
Sounding like they could have come out of Seattle in the ‘90s, Crete, Greece’s Prince Of Lilies are busting out raw, distorted, four-chord epics equal parts old school and new. Prince Of Lilies fuse grunge, punk, and thrashing garage rock and takes indie rock and gives it a well deserved punch in the face leaving it bloodied, raw and stunned – replacing the smug self awareness with an injection of rock n roll spirit.
Their Steve Albini-produced debut album VENT (released September 24, 2021 via Grunge Pop Records), was recorded on analog tape in just two days and is the kind of album that lets you believe in the power of passionate rock music again. Echoing the likes of Nirvana’s debut record or the early Tad and Mudhoney material – or anything for that matter on the early Sub Pop catalogue – these are dynamic pop songs with a hardcore edge, replacing slickness for a gritty live feel and punk attitude, managing to sound like the band is actually in the corner of your room threatening to tear a hole in your speakers.
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