Released on November 25, 2022 (Skarlett Roxx)
As I started writing all of the various information pertaining to Skarlett Roxx‘s new album Skarlett’s Web (i.e., band members, track list, etc.) for the purpose of this review, I was pretty surprised to see that the lead vocals were not handled by one person. Rhythm guitarist Deuce Mac apparently handled the lead vocals on six tracks while bassist Lizzy Jaxx took care of the rest on the remaining four songs. I actually had noticed a few years ago that Skarlett Roxx had two lead vocalists when I posted a few articles about the band but I forgot about this and didn’t notice that there were two different singers on various tracks when listening to the album as a whole during the last month or so. However, I did notice that the lead vocals seemed surprisingly pretty weak at times and now I can kind of single out the culprit.
Skarlett’s Web starts off with a decent guitar riff but the production overall is a bit muffled and unfortunately feels amateur-ish. It feels like a “first album” with a limited budget. That must be why rather than re-record certain songs with their newest members such as guitarist Danny Slade, Skarlett Roxx elected to keep a few songs recorded by previous members such as lead guitarist Kaiden Smith (who ended up playing on four songs). Usually, each song starts off with a cool guitar riff and although there are things to like on each track, I find that there is nothing that memorable on the album to have me want to hear it again. Jaxx is definitely the weaker singer out of the two lead vocalists featured on Skarlett’s Web. Unfortunately, Jaxx seems to have a limited vocal range and it feels like he is almost talking when “singing” the verses to songs such as “Rock N’ Roll Nightmare.” I would rather have Deuce Mac handle all the lead vocals although no one is going to think he is the next Ronnie James Dio.
Probably the best part on Skarlett’s Web is the guitar work although it seems snippets are borrowed or heavily influenced by other songs. The beginning riff for “Tonight” really reminds me of Mötley Crüe. The start of “Sick Romance” seems ripped off from Judas Priest‘s intro to their classic track “You’ve Got Another Thing Comin'” before Skarlett Roxx launch seemingly into a riff very similar to what can be heard on Britny Fox‘s “Girlschool.” While it’s nice to hear some familiar riffs, it’s disappointing to realize that Skarlett Roxx seem to be grazing a little too closely to some great tracks that I grew up on. Even the drumming seems to borrow from other songs as the intro to “Jezebel” (before the piano kicks in) reminds me of Ozzy Osbourne‘s track “Over The Mountain.”
While I have mostly criticized Skarlett’s Web so far, I like most of the songs on the album including the easy to singalong to “Love Machine” (no, not a cover of the W.A.S.P. classic), “Jezebel” (the piano parts are a nice touch to add some variety) and the speedier “Taste Your Tongue.” I think that if there was some better production on Skarlett’s Web and some better overall singing, the album had the potential to be a lot better. I feel the best is yet to come with Skarlett Roxx if they can remedy some of the issues that I have already mentioned. That being said, Skarlett’s Web will likely fall into the category of albums that I never listen to again. They shouldn’t feel that bad about this since probably about 80% of the records that I review fall into this category.
01. Skarlett’s Web
03. Rock N’ Roll Nightmare
04. Love Machine
05. King of The Dead
06. Taste Your Tongue
07. Sick Romance
09. To The Barrel
10. Call Me Crazy
Deuce Mac – guitar, lead vocals (1, 4, 6, 7, 9, 10)
Lizzy Jaxx – bass (2, 3, 5, 8)
Ashton Harvey – drums (1, 2, 4, 7)
Danny Slade – lead guitar (5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)
Pat Geasland – drums (5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)
Kaiden Smith – lead guitar (1, 2, 4, 7)
Recorded, mixed and mastered by Ari Mihalopoulos
Reviewed by Olivier for Sleaze Roxx, March 2023
Skarlett Roxx‘s “Call Me Crazy” video:
Skarlett Roxx‘s “King of The Dead” single:
Skarlett’s Roxx‘s “Love Machine” single: