22 January 2016

Tears from Venere - Temporary Lives

Another Italian trip here with Tears from Venere who seem to be based in Northern Italy, formed in 2011, they have previously released an EP called ‘A Long Road to Happiness…’ in 2013 and this record we are looking at here is their self-produced debut.  The band seem to be a self-sufficient cottage industry to this point; making the record themselves, getting the artwork & booklet together himself and making everything in house (only asking for help with their publicity) and that is an admirable way to conduct your affairs.  But how with this self-reliance contribute to the sound?  Will it make the album sound like a singular vision or as if it needed an outside pair of eyes?  Well let’s find out how it has turned out…...

Starting the album is “Roulette” which comes across as a glam/punk rock monster with a sound akin to classic era Guns N’ Roses jamming with noisy punks Hybrid Children for an afternoon.  It is face paced, high octane fun in the same vein as Backyard Babies – just with a little more Motorhead rather than Motley Crue; it is a good opening which gives a good opening shot to get the attention of the audience.  Following on is the title track “Temporary Lives” and with the high pitch sound of an alarm you are back in a punk led number.  The verses are fast paced and bouncing along, the chorus though sets the breaks on any momentum that was being build and the transition between the two is too quick; it is not smooth and it jars the song for me.  With that being said, I do love the solo in the middle of the song and it does save it to a certain degree.  “My Name Is V” is an interesting moment for me on this album – as a track it is not the most spectacular new song I have heard this month (or even this week), there is nothing on here which has not been done before and will probably be done again by other artists; however, it is a song that has been making me smile more than any other song, it has been played a lot more than other songs and it is because what it does (which is a standard rock/punk tune with a great solo at a medium pace) is just fun, a no-brainer that skips your brain and hits the heart and hips so that you do not have to listen to that grey matter between your ears.   It is a simple tune, a good tune and one that makes me reach for repeat every now and then; I call that a win on this album.

“Release Me” is the fourth song that goes between the fast/slower shift in tempo once more, this time it does it with considerable more fluid motions than on “Temporary Lives”.  It is back to the sound of Backyard Babies & The Almighty to these ears and it hits all the right spots once again.  It is another good song that ticks all the right boxes which is all you can ask from a rock band at times.  Starting with waves and the sound of an airport announcement, “Never Love Back” feels as if the 80’s only ended yesterday from the beginning.  It feels like the ballad track of the album, but there is still a hard rock bomb and shouting vocal in the mix on this song that makes it sound unlike anything you would hear from a band like Aerosmith; I could imagine it being used by someone like Kevin Smith though for a montage in one of his movies, it does have a cinematic feeling with strings added to the riffs and hard drumming.  It is a decent number once again, not spectacular but still alright which is the best I can say for it.  The second third of this album ends with “Raise Your Voice” and this is one of those songs that I should connect with and it just passes me by.  Fast paced rock with a heavy bass line, shouty chorus and I just cannot get into it no matter how many times I have listened to it; it is ok and I am sure it will impress their fans, but it does nothing for me – either good or bad.

“One More Night” is not a cover of the Phil Collins song, but a new one from Tears from Venere that is all about getting that one more night with a person of interest and not wanting to say goodbye.  It is another song that is not doing anything that I have not heard before, but it is entertaining in a loud, shouty way that Kerbdog did in years gone by.  The nu-metal blast beat section in the middle though, that does nothing for this song.  The penultimate song of the album is “Hey God” and this song actually steals the thunder from everything else on this album; it is an explosive song that grabs your attention from the beginning, stabs you in the heart with one of the loudest riffs that I have heard for a long while from a hard rock/punk combo and one that hits all the right buttons from beginning to finish.  Without a shadow of a doubt it is the best song on the album and shows what this band can create when everything falls into the right places for them.  Ending the album is “Fame & Glory” ends the album and whilst it does not reach the heights of “Hey God”, it does nothing wrong at all.  The band sound spot-on here, the riff gives a chill in the same way that you can get from a classic AC/DC, The Almighty or even The Wildhearts riff would give me.  Anyone that knows me (or the rest of the blog team) knows how high we hold The Wildhearts in our estimation and that is one of the best compliments I can give as this high octave, hard rock number takes this album by its balls and towards the end.

This is an album of potential rather than a finished article in my opinion, the band are still getting into their stride and being self-reliant (especially when recording) means that they are very insular to a certain degree outside of the influences that they naturally bring to the table.  Hence it is an album that shows that the band are more than capable of making a song, but might need a bit of guidance on when to extend a song, when to change something around and things of that nature.  However, the sound they make, their actual tone is one that perks my interest as it is a classic hard rock/punk hybrid that is usually the type of music I head for when I am listening to something just for the joy of it (and when Nick Cave is pissing me off).  I reckon this band will become major players in years to come to be honest, they have a sound like Backyard Babies did in the beginning and they have toured the world.  For what this is album though, it might not make my hair stand on end but it is good and honest fun – file under ones to watch when they kick my arse with a stunner of an album.

7 out of ten – This is good and worth checking out

Top track – Hey God

You can purchase Temporary Lives from Bandcamp here

You can visit the Tears of Venere Facebook here
At the time of writing, Temporary Lives is not available on Spotify, Deezer or other streaming services

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