This EP by Liverpool’s Black Cat Bones is not actually as new as it pretends to be. It was recorded last year and this is a re-release; this edition is being marketed, distributed and managed by the band themselves.
I first encountered Black Cat Bones last year when I wandered into one of Rebellion Manchester’s all-dayers to find an interesting-looking band on the stage. The singer has a look of Axl Rose. The guitarist gives more than a passing nod to the late Phil Lynott. There is hair flying a-plenty (and we all know how much I like that!) However, what really transfixed me was the music. They had energy, they had melody; here is a band showing everyone how to play hard rock as it SHOULD be!
I have a confession to make though. After buying the EP I brought it home where it sat with others for several weeks in a small, sad pile. It was waiting for me to get around to actually listening to it…… My bad, because on re-visiting it for the purpose of telling you all about it I realised that this EP is actually a little gem.
There are 5 tracks on the EP: Devil You Know, Down To The River, Give You The World, Lust and Seen Better Days. It’s usually the case when listening to an “unknown” band that one track leaps out at you and lodges in your brain as a favourite but in this case it just didn’t happen. The quality of both songwriting and performance here is excellent, as is the production. Each song stands on it’s own merits, with it’s own strengths.
Title track “Down To The River” has a singalong chorus and a potentially epic guitar riff. “Give You The World” is fast, funky and playful and makes you want to dance. “Devil You Know” is dirtier, edgier, and teeters on the edge of being NWOBHM. In contrast, “Lust” is slower and almost bluesy and tips its hat in the direction of Led Zeppelin. Final track “Seen Better Days” is possibly the closest to their signature sound – this could be LA in 1987 not Liverpool in 2017!
Black Cat Bones are: Jonnie Hodson (lead vocals and harmonica). Rimmer (lead guitars). Ash Janes (drums, backing vocals). Adam Kerbache (rhythym guitar, backing vocals) and Jamie Hayward (bass, backing vocals). The band’s style is classic hard rock with a fairly obvious nod in the direction of a certain LA band. However, they are not a copycat band by any means. Singer Jonnie may look like Axl but his vocal style is much more in the vein of Sean Harris of Diamond Head.
For a band that only got together in 2013 Black Cat Bones have supported some well-known names already. You may have seen them play alongside The Quireboys, Warrior Soul, The Answer and Tygers of Pan Tang amongst others. They will also be back out on the road again in October supporting Marco Mendoza. There will also be a one-off acoustic gig to officially launch the EP – this will be at Clockworks in Liverpool on 29th September.
After this you will be able to pick up a copy of the EP on all the usual platforms. Itunes, Amazon, Google Play and Spotify should all have downloads available. There are no links available yet but keep an eye on their facebook page for updates. I do think that the best way to get your hands on a copy would be to pop along to one of the upcoming gigs and check them out live though!
For more info you can check out their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/BlackCatBonesUK/