Released to a fanfare of utter indifference as well as a few comments along the lines of "OMG, BEWBS!!!", the debut album by Canadian band Kittie wasn't really at the forefront of most people's musical endeavours back in 1999. The nu-metal movement was gathering pace and was still (as mentioned in a previous blog) a byword for downtuned guitars and groovy beats. It wasn't until Limp Bizkit hit the big-time that it started to move towards the cross between rap and metal with sportswear apparel, DJ's and extremely lowest-common-denominator lyrics. but I digress.
I've listened to this album for the first time in about 7/8 years. I first picked it up in the year 2000 and it's not like it's got any significant memories of anything (Although I was strangely optimistic that the 2000's would be an awesome decade - if I'd known they would include reality TV, Kim Kardashian, George 'Dubya' Bush, Gordon Brown and the current global financial meltdown then maybe I'd not have been so optimistic). But, as before, I digress.
This album however, is quite good. Now given that the band name is extremely girly and there are four women in the band, one can be forgiven in thinking this is going to sound rather light. Wrong. The music (with the exception of one track) is actually quite heavy and certainly stood up to what was around at the time. Ok so it's not Napalm Death heavy, but it could've been a lot worse (The second album went in a heavier direction but more on that soon, maybe?). It's well played too. The production job - Thanks to GGGarth - is a bit muddy, but does the job. Vocals are a mixed bag as the lead singer (Morgan Lander) is trying to do a clean/growl vocal mix a la Fear Factory but the clean vocals don't suit the music. It's like having Betty Boop singing the lead vocals on "Roots", that's the best way I can describe it. The growls are alright, certainly pack a punch or two! The non-heavy track is called "Paperdoll" and for the most part is entirely clean before ricking out about four bars towards the end. "Charlotte" is possibly the only song where the 'Betty Boop' vocals work. Album highlight is "Brackish" - for some reason, this song was compared to a lot of KoRn (Yes, I STILL spell it like that even though it's not been done so since 1996!) material but in truth, it's a bit of an unfair comparision.
So while it's not a game-changer or a world-beater, there are still worse things out there that you can spend your money on. I'd try it out first though before you buy it as while not to everyone's tastes, there should still be a few who like it.
7/10 - This is good and well worth a check.
You can buy this album on Amazon and iTunes.
You can purchase from amazon here
You can listen to it on Spotify here