HOUSTON!


"Fast in Elegance" (Sliptrick; 2008)

Reviewed by Metal Mark

This was somewhat of a tricky release to pin down, due to the Jekyll and Hyde-like variance in the styles presented here. 

There was a time where I thought pop-like melodies had no place in hard rock, but now I know it can work if it's tied in using a method that isn't too sappy. Italy's Houston! were tough to read because they have tracks that come on like barnstormers and next they launch into a piano-led ballad like it's the most natural progression they could follow. I don't mean hair metal ballads so much as it is more a real pop sound and, yes, there is a difference. 

What I like about this album is how Houston! blatantly do what they choose without regard to trends or fitting in. That I can respect and admire; plus, it shows a lot of confidence in what they are attempting to do. 

I don't think they succeed at everything they attempt though. Perhaps it's lack of experience, but I am not sure the hooks are often sharp enough to keep some of their songs going. The vocals help a lot, but they need to polish some things up here and there to really sustain some momentum. 

"Fast in Elegance" didn't quite feel as complete as I was hoping it would be. Yet every single time I listened to this album there were moments where it was undeniably vibrant and maybe even fresh. Those moments were enough for me to hope that this band maintains their undeniable spirit and turns their attention towards elevating their music to the next level.

For more information, check out http://www.myspace.com/houstonband


Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.


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Copyright 2008 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 11 Jul 2017 13:44:32 -0400.