Ever watch a movie that starts out pretty well, grabs your interest, then proceeds to bore the fuck out of you until it ends? Yeah, well, the Rock â??N' Roll Soldiers' The Two EPs is sort of like that. In their defense, it could be like a Vin Diesel movie, which starts horribly, ends horribly, and has equally horrible filler. Actually, I'm tempted to not review this album, and just rant about how much I hate Vin Diesel, and think that Walker Texas Ranger should slow motion spin-kick him in the face, through a glass window. But rumor is this is a music website, so I'll save that for another time.
"Anthem" starts things out in a promising enough manner, with some solid, melodic guitar work, and then a transition to a simple drum beat, and and a very definite danceable vocal pattern. During the verses, this almost sounds more like Hot Hot Heat than anything associated with rockâ??n'roll, but there's still the good guitar work to hold everything together. The chorus of "With her cold hands slidin' down your warm shirt, we're the last of the rock â??n' roll soliders" is certainly a lot of fun, even without there being much substance to it. "Funny Little Feeling" also has a real nice groove to it, and just as catchy of a chorus as the song that proceeded it, while offering more of a punk rock kick than the rest of what's found on
this album. Herein lies the problem, though, in that there's no other songs of noticeable replay value until the 9th song on the album, which offers up some fuzz-laden guitars and some real gritty vocals. This is probably the best song on the album, and whether that's because it deviates so much from the sound of the rest of it, or just because it's really well written, remains to be determined, but it's a damn good song regardless. There's even a damn good guitar solo, albeit a short one towards the end of the song.
The next song, "Three Goddamns," offers up a real country, even bluegrassy feel to it. It's much slower than the rest of the record, and just has an old Western style sound to it. The problem with this song is how out of place it sounds on the album. Had they incorporated another 2 or 3 songs on here more akin to this, it'd give the album a real solid flow, and some slower songs to change things up. It's definitely a step in the right direction, and maybe they can explore those possibilities to a bit further of an extent on the next full-length, as this isn't a true full length, but a merging of two vinyl EPs.
This isn't a bad effort from the Rock â??N' Roll Soldiers, but there's a lot of potential improvements to think about for the next go â??round. They've got solid elements in place, and a great lead singer, but something needs to spice up the middle of the album, which drags a bit. And it's not copying the beginning of other artists' songs ("Everybody's Gotta Live" starts out almost identically to Green Day's "Jackass"). Maybe next time, guys.