UK Release October 18th 2011 on Hardline
Thousand Watt Stare is a project put together by one Christian Martucci, a guitarist who should need no introduction to fans of US punk, as his pedigree stretches right back to Dee Dee Ramone: most recently he is known for his work with Slipknot’s Corey Taylor.
Last year, he teamed up with bassist Pat Kim and drummer Dylan Howard of Unwritten Law, and together they released an acclaimed EP: now, with the addition of second guitarist Trevor Howard (as far as we can tell, no relation to the suave English actor) to flesh out the sound, TYS have unleashed their debut full-length opus
Title track ‘Silver Dimes’ has a gothic Misfits-meets-Cramps vibe to it, with it’s edgy, staccato guitar and female vocal harmonics, while ‘World Of Scars’ opens with a riff reminiscent of early Billy Idol, while Martucci’s snarling vocal reinforces that comparison, which can also be applied to ‘New Dimension’, which sounds like a Gen X / Ramones crossover in one big punk rock ‘n’ brawl. The 80s British post-punk feel is no more evident than the quartet’s edgy take on The Lords Of The New Church’s hidden gem, ‘Open Your Eyes’, which is infused with new life and dominated by Martucci’s vocal, which also doffs it’s cap to the likes of Wayne Hussey and Andrew Eldridge: indeed, the post-punk English ‘goth’ gods are another fitting reference point.
Approaching the mid-point of the album, ‘Scavengers’ and ‘Ashes’ are faster, more straightahead punk, but still with that darker, gothic edge to them, while ‘Taught By Television’ sees Martucci spit his lyrics in a vehement indictment of modern society and ‘Messenger’ features a metal guitar line that wouldn’t have seemed out of place on a Di’Anno era Iron Maiden offering.
‘It’s Too Late’ again recalls the Misfits, this time with Jello Biafra on lead vocals, while ‘Outside Looking Out’ a glorious piece of bass-driven pure punk, while ‘Dead In The Clouds’ is a joyful romp and ‘Noose’ closes the album with a stomping, sultry swagger.
All in all, this is a hugely enjoyable and one guaranteed to your mates boogie-ing along at your next house party.
Review by Mark Ashby aka DJ Monk