Audrey Horne
Youngblood

Have to feel some type of pity for Norway’s Audrey Horne. Thanks to the current onslaught of retro-minded, bellbottom-lovin rock, they’ve cast as an afterthought while Rival Sons, Graveyard, and Witchcraft prance around like they’ve been doing this since the 70’s, while AH has been doing it since 2002, which in some weird twisted way, makes them the old men of this quasi-scene. For Audrey Horne (who is named after the Twin Peaks character), it’s the proverbial now-or-never moment on Youngblood (their fourth album overall), and with a new deal via Napalm Records, perhaps they too can join the hipster, showering-is-not-an-option party.

Lots of freewheeling, good-times jams to get down with, specifically the title track which flaunts a feel-good, anthemic chorus. Singer Toschie has quite a few worthy moments in addition to the title track, including “There Goes A Lady,” perhaps this era’s “Strut,” the Bob Seager classic that rocks harder than more people realize, as well as “Show and Tell,” where the man utilizes some of the throatier regions of his voice. The clapping/tambourine action on “Straight to Your Grave” is also pretty slick, perhaps a left jab at the above-mentioned trio Audrey Horne is vying for attention with.

The “real” classic rock/FM radio moments come raining down on “Cards with the Devil,” a KISS song, done Scandinavian-style. While it’s far from the album’s standout moment, it’s the kind of track none of Audrey Horne’s contemporaries wouldn’t dare to try…we think. Elsewhere, the boogie-down of “Pretty Little Sunshine” is as carefree as the title suggests, while “This Ends Here” displays some nifty twin guitar action courtesy of Enslaved lead axe-man Arve Isdal and Sahg’s Thomas Tofthagen.

Taking into account the priorities of Isdal (Enslaved is on one heck of a run, aren’t they?), one has to wonder if Audrey Horne has the capacity to become the next “it” retro rock band. Youngblood certainly has the wares to show for it, though, and it has probably a bit more depth than what we’re used to hearing from bands of this ilk. That’s not saying much, but that’s what you get when taking a flyer on bands who live in the 70’s.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by David E Gehlke
March 11th, 2013

Comments

  1. Commented by: Noch

    This album sure is a daring move in terms of experimentation within this sub-genre, especially with the panoply of influences at play. It really defines a unique blueprint for AUDREY HORNE, and whilst I consider this record a grower more than an instant love – I’ll keep on coming back to it. There’s too much excellency on here to let the few and far between weaker moments decide of a final verdict. Looking forward to the next record already, which I honestly think will be even better.


  2. Commented by: gabaghoul

    wow just checked this out and this thing RIPS. some of the riffs and guitarwork remind me of early Iron Maiden done up w/ modern production.


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