Drawing strongly from their many years as hard rock veterans, The Cult have returned with a superb record, Choice Of Weapon. Filled with grand moments of classic rock, hard rock, dark sounds, metal celebration, and all the classic rock and roll elements that metal heads enjoy, Choice Of Weapon is a grand album that should help fans remember that The Cult are a premier hard rock act.
The Cult has always been one of those bands stuck on the cusp of greatness. In the 80s they had plenty of modest hits, but lacked what would be considered a breakthrough song. With the release of 1989’s Sonic Temple, and their massive hit “Fire Woman” it appeared that The Cult was finally going to take their turn basking in the limelight of the hard rock elite. However, for some reason, that didn’t happen, and the band drifted into the background again. This is something I’ve never been able to figure out regarding The Cult. They are an extremely talented, enjoyable band. Why aren’t they more of a household name?
Hopefully, Choice Of Weapon will be the album that puts them back in print and brings the band to the forefront of recognized hard rock acts. It’s obvious from the wonderful product released, that The Cult only chose their best material when recording Choice Of Weapon.
Ian Astbury’s voice is still a sound of beauty, even though he’s been singing and touring for almost 30 years. Billy Duffy’s ability with the guitar has not faltered over the years either, and is still the perfect compliment to Astbury’s vocals. Astbury and Duffy together still make magic comparable to (or even better than) Tyler/Perry, Simmons/Stanley, and Jagger/Richards.
“Life>Death” is a powerful anthem and one of the best tracks on Choice Of Weapon. Reminiscent of a David Bowie song on steroids, “Life>Death” has a powerful hook and a chorus that draws the listener in and guarantees a hit of the repeat button on the MP3 player (or whatever device is being used to play this beauty). With a brilliant solo, stupendous vocals, and a perfect harmonic blend of assorted rock sounds and styles, “Life>Death” is one of the better rock songs that I have heard this year.
“Wilderness Now” is the first song on the album that I didn’t immediately love. Compared to the rest of the solid class of music, “Wilderness Now” is just boring. Astbury’s voice doesn’t sound as pleasing as on other songs, the guitar work is plain and pedestrian, and the overall beat is slow and lacking in creativity or originality. It is the only blemish on an otherwise amazing record.
“Lucifer” makes up for the lacking “Wilderness Now” by bringing back the punch and energy to Choice Of Weapon. A hard rocking, foot stomping, punch in the face reminiscent of a Rob Zombie anthem, “Lucifer” is an energetic tune packed with passion. Astbury’s voice is at its best and Duffy adds some intense guitar work to finish off this fantastic song. “Lucifer” could be the hit that paves the way for a whole new legion of Cult fans.
If you’ve missed The Cult, or if you are seeking a hard rock beauty to add to your stereo this summer, pick up a copy of Choice Of Weapon. You will not be disappointed. With magnificent riffs, fantastic vocals, and a whole lot of power, Choice Of Weapon satisfies as the choice of album for the summer.
Rating: Out of 10
- Honey From A Knife
- Elemental Light
- The Wolf
- For The Animals
- Wilderness Now
- A Pale Horse
- This Night In The City Forever
The Cult Is:
Ian Astbury – Vocals
Billy Duffy – Guitars
Chris Wyse – Bass
John Tempesta – Drums
Reviewed by Ryo Vie
Southern Lord proudly announces an incredible collaboration between label artists Boris and Ian Asbury of The Cult and The Doors! This finely-crafted four-song mini release, simply entitled BXI, was tracked and mixed in Tokyo in late April. Asbury’s vocals are a perfect match for Boris’s straightforward, laid-back, but still raw and imaginative songwriting constructed for the EP; another intriguing display within the band’s ever-morphing, extensive résumé of releases, tours and collaborations.
To see official CD, LP and digital release this September via Southern Lord, BXI will showcase the already unclassifiable rock of Boris in an entirely new light, and shows a new side one of rock and roll’s most notorious singers. The release features three new original tracks, as well as a cover of The Cult’s song “Rain”, ethereally vocalized by Boris guitarist Wata. Art and design for the release was commissioned to Stephen O’Malley (Ideologic.org, SUNNO))), etc.).
Pitchfork briefly interrogated Boris drummer Atsuo about this collaboration this week. Check out this exclusive piece on the EP and find out how this collaboration came to light: http://pitchfork.com/news/39000-boris-team-with-the-cults-ian-astbury/
This past weekend, Ian Asbury made an unannounced appearance with Boris at the band’s performance at Sydney, Australia’s Vivid LIVE appearance, blowing fans away with this unexpected set which showcased some of the material from the BXI EP as well as a cover of the classic “The End”, by The Doors.
BXI EP Track Listing:
1. Teeth and Claws
2. We are the Witches
4. Magickal Child
As previously announced, Boris will rock North America once again this summer alongside Russian Circles for half of the tour and Red Sparrowes for the latter. The usual Boris lineup of Wata (guitar, vocals), Atsuo (drums, vocals) and Takeshi (bass, guitar, main vocals) will once again be joined by additional guitarist, companion Michio Kurihara, as on several previous live and studio ventures together.
BORIS North North American Summer Excursion 2010:
7/24/2010 The Casbah – San Diego, CA
7/25/2010 Plush – Tucson, AZ
7/27/2010 The Loft @ Palladium Ballroom – Dallas, TX w/ Russian Circles
7/28/2010 The Mohawk – Austin, TX w/ Russian Circles
7/30/2010 Spanish Moon – Baton Rouge, LA w/ Russian Circles
7/31/2010 The Engine Room – Tallahassee, FL w/ Russian Circles
8/01/2010 The Masquerade – Atlanta, GA w/ Russian Circles
8/02/2010 Cat’s Cradle – Carrboro, NC w/ Russian Circles
8/03/2010 930 Club – Washington DC w/ Russian Circles
8/04/2010 Starlight Ballroom – Philadelphia, PA w/ Russian Circles
8/07/2010 The Middle East – Cambridge, MA w/ Russian Circles, Cave In
8/08/2010 Le Tulipe – Montreal, QC w/ Russian Circles
8/09/2010 Lee’s Place – Toronto, ON w/ Russian Circles
8/10/2010 Magic Stick – Detroit, MI w/ Russian Circles
8/11/2010 Southgate House – Newport, KY w/ Russian Circles
8/13/2010 Metro – Chicago, IL w/ Russian Circles
8/14/2010 Firebird – St. Louis, MO w/ Russian Circles
8/15/2010 Granada Theatre – Lawrence, KS w/ Russian Circles
8/16/2010 Marquis Theater – Denver, CO w/ Red Sparrowes
8/17/2010 *TBA – Salt Lake City, UT w/ Red Sparowes
8/19/2010 Republik – Calgary, AB w/ Red Sparowes
8/20/2010 The Starlite – Edmonton, AB w/ Red Sparowes
8/22/2010 Rickshaw Theater – Vancouver, BC w/ Red Sparowes
8/23/2010 Neumo’s – Seattle, WA w/ Red Sparowes
8/24/2010 Hawthorne Theatre – Portland, OR w/ Red Sparowes
8/26/2010 Great American Music Hall – San Francisco, CA w/ Red Sparowes
8/27/2010 El Rey – Los Angeles, CA w/ Red Sparowes
8/28/2010 The Glass House – Pomona, CA w/ Red Sparowes
9/05/2010 Kutsher’s Country Club – Monticello, NY @ ATP Fest – “Altar set” w/ SUNNO)))
More info on the BXI EP, additional US live aktions, and additional Boris news is forthcoming. Please stay tuned.