Finland hard rock band the Barbe Q Barbies have been active in since around 2003, there have been several tours, three singles and this; their debut album on Sounds of Finland records.
All Over You starts off with Spell, a mid paced song that at least showcases professional musicianship; however this does not serve as a strong opening song when compared to the later tracks. The band’s fire really seems to light up in New Direction with the vocal sounding a lot more fractured and broken backed by strong songwriting, the band really seem to kick in here and everything about them seems to improve massively; the addition of backing vocals massively reinforces the overall power. Wig Wam Bam’s is not as strong and bares none of the conviction displayed on New Direction, it comes across as filler. Twisted Little Sister builds up well to demonstrate powerful hard rocking dynamics.
This puts things fully back on track for Aggression, here they play to their full strengths as a band; the guitar work and rhythm section are excellent. The rhythmic aggression and chorus assault are brilliant. My Salvation builds up in intensity and once in full gear the band are amazing, playing with conviction, passion and drive. Rockstar brings the pace down a little; the rhythm section takes over as the guitar and vocals pull back a little. Don’t Look at Me, has impressive guitar soloing, throwing in a few classic axe shapes in for good measure. Dedication for a Friend sees the vocalist’s full broken voice working to perfection; this also manages a good balance of working at a lighter pace on a hard rock album, without becoming tiresome balladry. Escort; big drums lead the way as if to kick out a waste of space lover; a catchy chorus serves as the exit. All Over You is kickass with dirty thrashiness with the solo on fire; the guitar almost talks greatness. Rock’n’Roll winds things down with excellent harmonies and vocal control.
Barbe Q Barbies have made a good album, but I found my self getting a little pissed off with some of the filler tracks earlier on in the album and was relieved when they found their fire and that’s what saves this band. But I frequently found myself wanting the rawer qualities of the band, clean professional production cannot mask over tracks like Wig Wam Bam and Spell, but the best tracks on here (New Direction, Aggression, My Salvation and Dedication for a Friend) make up for that. The band need to always revel in the rawer, harder, dirtier, passionate aspects of their sound and it’s onward and upwards.
02 New Direction
03 Wig Wam Bam
04 Twisted Little Sister
06 My Salvation
08 Don’t Look At Me
09 Dedication For A Friend
11 All Over You