THE BLACK BULLETS
THE BLACK BULLETS EP
Released May 4, 2012 (Too Loaded Records)
01. Shoot Em Down
02. Black Bullets
03. All Or Nothing
04. Too Loaded For Love
05. Teaching Yourself To Live
Rob Castle – vocals and rhythm guitar
Stevie Pearce – lead guitar and vocals
Jim Bones – bass and vocals
Carl Donoghue – drums
Produced by The Black Bullets.
You may not have heard of The Black Bullets, but you will. Their mission statement is to conquer the world one tattoo studio at a time — and make a glorious racket doing it. Those with a penchant for heads down, straight-up rock ‘n’ roll in the Rose Tattoo, Motorhead and AC/DC mold, but with a sprinkling of attitude circa 1977, will love their modern twist on this well abused genre. The Black Bullets are not reinventing the wheel but they are having a good go at setting it on fire whilst pushing it off a cliff.
Five tracks are on offer here, with “All Or Nothing” the longest clocking in at just over 4 minutes, giving you some idea as to their no nonsense approach — get in, get out, and leave a trail of devastation in their wake. Well produced considering the tiny budget and even better packaged, the EP is a revelation from beginning to end. It’s all the things you love about rock ‘n’ roll condensed into one fifteen minute bundle of joy.
“Shoot Em Down” opens the CD, hitting the ground running and sounding like the sort of thing Thin Lizzy would’ve been doing had Phil Lynott taken a shitload of crystal meth instead of shooting up and writing crap like “Sarah”. Frontman Rob Castle, six foot plus of sideburns, tattoos and dirty denim, is an imposing (and strangely arousing) specimen and his rhythm guitar work keeps the whole thing moving along apace. The self-titled track “Black Bullets” is two minutes of in-your-face boogie, a perfect slice of big shout along chorus, foot stomping rhythm and a riff that Angus Young would give his left nut for these days. You can tell drum torturer Carl Donoghue loves his work on this one — he doesn’t so much play them as batter them into submission. He then goes on to do even more on the aforementioned “All Or Nothing”, with a slow burning start it ends in a frenzied burst of Stevie Pearce‘s lead guitar work, making you wonder what the hell Yngwie Malmsteen has been pissing about at for the last 30 years.
“Too Loaded (For Love)” is, or should be, the ‘Radio Friendly Unit Shifter’. It grooves like a motherfucker, in the same way that all the best floor fillers do. You just can’t help but wriggle around when it’s on. Jim Bones, the very obviously ADHD afflicted Ritalin deprived bassist, nails this and every other track here. The EP is so tight it squeaks and the energy of the band has been perfectly captured in these five tracks.
Having caught The Black Bullets live a few weeks back you can tell this lot are the real deal. Any band that can weave Motorhead‘s “Killed By Death” and Thin Lizzy‘s “Are You Ready” seamlessly into their set deserve to go far. They drink, live, eat, throw up, sleep, breathe, and drink rock ‘n’ roll. Buy this EP now before it becomes one of those unattainable collectable classics that you wish you’d bought the first time around. The Black Bullets will be massive.
www.theblackbullets.com – www.facebook.com/TheBlackBulletsUK
Reviewed by Hetfield’s Mullet for Sleaze Roxx, November 2012