Mad, Chaotic And Truly Rock And Roll
If awards were given out for the band who led the most rock and roll lifestyle than L.A's The Icarus Line would be leaving with a bucket load. Prone to manic bouts of sheer craziness, the five piece have led something of an eventful life in the rock world with such antidotes as the time their drummer took on the whole of metal band Avenged Sevenfold single handily at 2004's Reading Festival only to have to be led away before he then tried his luck with the metaller's security as well. Crazy doesn't really cover it. Then there are of course rumours of then spraying The Strokes tour van in paint branding them sell outs and that's without tales of drugs, sex and booze. Yes, The Icarus Line certainly walk the rock star walk but is that all there is to them?
Returning with their third album and boasting only one surviving member of the original line up (singer Joe Cardamone), T.I.L have slightly dislodged the abrasive punk from their first album in favour of a hodgepodge of experimental sounds that attempts to cover all bases and keep everyone happy. Still lurking in the background, T.I.L punk base is still present on 'Black Lives At The Golden Coast' only now it has a few friends in the form of indie curtsey of Britain in the 90s, artsy noise rock that adds intensity behind a powerful punch plus some glam rock to insure your pummelled into the ground and begging for more. With so much going on its hard to see how things could actually end up sounding coherent and in all honesty they often don't but if anything this just adds to the charm and rock and roll consensus residing throughout.
Recklessly aggressive and with no signs of planning or coherency, Black Lives At The Golden Coat pounds you firmly to wall with the opening rush of 'Black Presents'. Sneering spite led vocals worm their way around angry guitars that seem to be clinging on for their life whilst a sleazy swagger resides throughout. Madly chaotic, 'Black Present's sets the tone assuredly for the album as the band continue to sound like Sonic Youth being beaten over the head by T-Rex before enlisting the help of The Hives. Frantic, fast and a smouldering mash of anarchy, Black Lives At The Golden Coast is a visceral dose of chaos that you've probably heard all before by bands doing pretty much the same thing but somehow T.I.L do it with a renewed sense of swagger and arrogance that demands you pay attention.
Brandishing a messy squall of feedback, 'Amber Alert' struts around with intensity and spite whilst 'Frankfurt Smile' attempts to meet it with a fist full of glam rock that knocks you out after assaulting you with a throbbing bass and Bolen-esque vocals. From Bolan Cardamone goes on to embody a young Bobby Gillespie as 'Fshn Fvr's lack of vowels is made up by revealing the L.A group's softer side as things slow down and the bringers of pandemonium effortlessly tackle a ballad making for a tellingly moving track.
T.I.L certainly lay claim to the rock and roll lifestyle and with stories to rival the old guard in the rock world, the L.A natives definitely are half way there to be a swagger fuelled rock band. With 'Black Lives At The Golden Coast' it seems the band finally have the songs to match their reputation. Sure, you've heard it all before and earth shattering it probably isn't but there's a degree of charm beneath the sleaze as you steadily warm to insane world of T.I.L. Mad, unruly and insanely dangerous T.I.L do it all with the rock stories to boot.