CD Review – Carousel – “2113” (2015 Tee Pee Records)

Carousel – “2113” (2015 Tee Pee Records)
Review By Jeff Blackburn

You wanted the best???…. You got the best, The……. I’m out, I
don’t want Gene and Paul’s attorney contacting me for gimmick
infringement! Upon first listen of Carousel’s debut album, “Jeweler’s
Daughter” (2013) the dirty, grittiness of the title track served as a
warning as to what was about to invade the unsuspecting ear holes of
fans who yearned for the good ‘ole days of Van Halen jams, not the
watered down,bloated, salt and peppered, ego driven version present
today. Carousel expand on the heavy rock sound that came before them, add a pinch of metal, and a heaping helping of early punk attitude. Adding to their already growing credentials, Carousel tout former and current members of cult icons Pentagram, The Skull, and Bang. Not bad for a little old band from Pittsburgh!

“2113” is a more mature, and polished record. The dirt is still there
in bunches, waiting to be discovered under the Thin Lizzy dual
harmonies, thick bass lines, and razor sharp rhythms. The best line in
rock and roll today comes in the second track “Photograph”, as front
man Dave Wheeler says “Ain’t nothin in this world that’s meant to
last, and that’s the only thing that’s true. And when it starts to go,
don’t it sure go fast, and there ain’t nothin that you can do”
followed by the stoner Clutch like mountain riff that kicks in and
will have yinz fuckers rockin out and moving like it’s the last riff
to ever be heard. Carousel is backed by a very tight and precise
rhythm section of bassist Jim Wilson and drummer Jake Leger, here in
known as thunder buddies.The dual electric guitar assault is
solidified by Wheeler, and the addition of Matt Goldsborough, a bad
ass picker that should be on your radar if he isn’t already. Not often
in today’s rock landscape is such masterful guitar playing recorded as
evidence to showcase all the possibilities of lead and rhythm playing.
Many guitar players can dabble with a part here or there, but few take
seriously the craft of soulful playing like Wheeler and Goldsborough
do on “2113”.

I know Matt will say something to the point of I am more a metal dude ( haha thanks brother!), but I know a thing or two about a thing or two! Overall “2113” by Carousel gets a 9 out of 10 in this metal dudes book. The musicianship is refreshing, as much of what comes out today is stale and re hashed material that has been done a million times before. On “2113”, Carousel takes us back to the future again.
Carousel have been taken back to the mid seventies in a time machine, and have expanded the sound of their brand of what is foolishly referred to as “classic rock” Bull shit, classic rock and early hard rock stations and aficionados still pimp Led Zeppelin and early Van Halen as what is new with the times. Instead of searching out and drawing attention to something that has a mid seventies/ early eighties attitude that rocks. Carousel is the arena band that was around before there was an arena to play. The classic Lizzy influence, early Henley/Frey ideology, shit they even cover Joe Walsh’s “Turn to
Stone”.

These are some of the sounds that help bring hard rock and
metal be sought after by those crazy kids that it called out to. David
Lee Roth without knowing it does the poorest David Wheeler I have ever heard. Diamond Dave Wheeler has that snarky and monstrous voice that huge “rock stars” have used as a reason to walk with unjustified swagger. Those big movie soundtracks of the seventies and eighties can re dub the score and use this record accordingly. “Highway Strut” would be a perfect fit in “Detroit Rock City”. Songs that stick out on “2113” are “Photograph”, “Man Like Me” “2113”, and the cover of Mr. Rocky Mountain Way’s “Turn to Stone”. Ladies fret not, as there are a few songs that would be categorized as the “pantie dropper” in “Buried Alive in Your Arms”, and “Strange Revelation”. There is something for all the rockers, punks, stoners, doomers, and metal loving maniacs on this album.Carousel are on their way and bringgin the Crippler, to bring yinz to your knees.

Track Listing:

1.) Trouble
2.) Photograph
3.) Buried Alive in Your Arms
4.) Jim’s Song
5.) Highway Strut
6.) Strange Revelation
7.) Man Like Me
8.) 2113
9.) Turn To Stone (Joe Walsh Cover)

 


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