Central Florida rockers Blaine The Mono have just released their first full-length album Vices in Verses. It’s not just an incredibly catchy title, but also an album worth listening to. The local quartet offers a nice blend of Alternative, Grunge and Metal that provides a nice glimpse of their potential on a well crafted album.
(You can click on the title of each selection to sample it on iTunes)
Fronted by dynamic female vocalist Randi Stickles, this foursome immediately grabs your attention from the first note of her stark evocative vocals kicking off the album’s first track “Missing.” It’s one of the best tracks on the diverse seven song debut. Eric Joseph’s guitar is the perfect accompaniment on the opening cut, where we get to sample Stickles’ broad range throughout the song, including our first peak at her dramatic screamed lyrics, which work perfectly, reminiscent of some of Hole’s better offerings.
“Raise the Glass” is a potential hit where Stickles voice is nicely highlighted, but her showcase song is “Circles,” where her voice still retains its razor-edged toughness, but also offers up a refreshing peek at her tender side. Clinton Garner’s drums in this one are fantastic, as well. My favorite track is “Svine Munich,” which features some innovative guitar from Joseph and is carried by his guitar and Chris Culverwell’s bass. It’s a catchy song with an excellent groove, where the band’s musical talent comes to the forefront.
It’s not a perfect album, but Vices in Verses is a nice debut from a group that’s only been together for a year. There are a few over-the-top moments, where the screamed vocals seem a bit forced and unnecessary. But, I expect that as they mature as a band, we’ll see that mix improved, and I’m looking forward to witnessing that progression.
You can check out the album on iTunes via the link below.