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Shallow Side - Saints and Sinners

Label: Thermal Entertainment LLC
Format: Download
Released: 2019
Reviewed By: Jack Mangan
Rating: 7/10


Shallow Side do a pretty interesting blend of Hair Metal and Twenty-First Century Radio Metal. - - On tape, that is; their look is one hundred percent short-hair/t-shirts contemporary, without a drop of hairspray or guyliner in sight. (OK, maybe they’re recording on hard drives, not tapes, but I digress. . .) It’s quite a treacherous tightrope walk they do, with the two genres to either side, but they mostly keep the balance. At times, their Nickelback components make me cringe, but I suppose that’s inevitable if you’re occupying a commercial Hard Rock space. Let’s face it, for better or worse, Hair Metal and the inaccurately-named Modern “Alternative” Metal genres both represent the more commercial side of Heavy music.

 

The songs on Shallow Side’s debut, “Saints and Sinners” (very Hair/Traditional Metal title, btw), are plenty catchy. Opening track, “Revival” is a solid burner, and the title track, while a tiny bit Countrified, features a pretty killer slide guitar line. “Drugs and Lust” starts off weak, but is saved by a fantastic chorus, one that’s a bit reminiscent of Striker. “Temptation” is pretty genuinely sweet-sounding. That one and “No More” could both top multiple Billboard charts. Lyrical and emotional depth are pretty-much absent from the record - - the band name is appropriate - - but for folks looking to put on some accessible, energetic Rock n’ Roll in the background, you could do worse. I think Hair Metal aficionados and and fans of, I don’t know - - Puddle of Mudd? Nickelback? - - might hear Shallow Side and be pleasantly surprised. Or their reaction might be more along the lines of “WTF?!” It’s hard to predict. Me? I don’t really fall into either of those categories, but I can appreciate the merits of this record. Sometimes a Corona suits your mood more than a complex craft beer. I hope the KROQ (LA), KUPD (Phoenix), WDHA (NJ), and WNYL (NY) pick them up in their rotations.

 
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