Friday, August 17, 2012

Vitamin X - About to Crack (2012)

Drenched in a sweaty musical bliss, nearly every song on Vitamin X's latest offering, About to Crack, is backed by a moving, grooving bass line, not unlike what an inebriated Lemmy Kilmister might scribble down for use during a Motörhead set. As it turns out, bluesy solo guitaring proves to be one of the more enjoyable qualities of the record and points at "Fast" Eddie Clark, another, though departed, Motörhead veteran. Much like the Brits before them, Vitamin X gather the best qualities of metal and punk and create and accessible and wonderfully coherent product--a rarity for the former.

Instead of aiming for the average album's 30-minute run-time, Vitamin X take a complete u-turn and clock in at a blindingly fast 18 minutes. To put things into perspective, rockers can listen to this record twice in the span one might spin a "regular" album. Whereas the average record takes double the time to sink in, About to Crack is extremely easy to absorb after only two spins, but at a slight cost: many of the songs fuse together and become indistinguishable from one another until listeners sit down and analyze what has entered one ear and left the other. 

But with that said, there's plenty of fun to be had and no strings attached when the party gets too crazy. Want to grab beer and rage like drunken maniac? Go ahead. Vitamin X might be straight edge, but they still embody the spirit hardcore punk bands have been known for since, well, forever. The top tracks are the ones beginning with excellent bluesy lead-ins, exploding into a disoriented mess of locked-fist riffing and turbulent vocalisms. "Crank it Up" and "Maelstrom" do exactly that, begging listeners to twist the volume button higher as they recall punk’s heyday and quietly think to themselves, "I dig this!" Vitamin X is truly at their best when they mimic their idols and put their own twist on the style. The biggest surprise, however, is the closer, a Motörhead-esque piece of metallic rock that simply will not exit the brain, even when skipping across the rest of the record. Refusing to pass as a quiet resemblance, "Last Laugh" is unmistakably Lemmy and indeed the best cut here.

One part hardcore punk, another Motörhead, Vitamin's X's music is smeared with enough influence from Lemmy and the boys that anyone should be able to make the jump into About to Crack with relative ease. And, really, that's the beauty of throwing a few bluesy licks over an extreme form of music--it suddenly makes everything so accessible and addictive. All listeners can do now is echo
the thoughts of others: Can we have more? 



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