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The Kill

Forbidden Records, 1998

REVIEW BY: Christopher Thelen

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 07/21/1998

Why does there always seem to be an inverse relationship between the length of an album and its title?

In the case of the hard rock act The Kill, Superdragsmackheadpsychoplasticgogopunk (brother, if you think I'm typing this one a lot, you're crazy) clocks in at barely over a half-hour, which is hardly enough time to fairly build an opinion of any band. What you can figure out over the course of these nine songs is this is a band trying to become the Guns N' Roses for the '90s, even if the songs don't have as much bite as the '80s bad boys.

Comprised of vocalist Jas, guitarist Jason Jameson, bassist Sammy Allen and drummer Tim DiDuro, one would think from the name of the album that The Kill would incorporate a lot of different styles into their music. If only this were the case; what they do crank out are standard (though good) hard rock numbers (surprisingly without a lot of flashy guitar work) that often touch on the genre's favorite subjects: sex and drugs.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Now, before you get completely judgmental, the songs that touch on drugs show the dark side they have ("Ultraphobic, paranoia / I'm your daily dosage, I'm your dark destroyer" on "Renaissance Man #6 (Deluxe)", "You bleed, you speed, your speed kills" on "Quicker Than Dead"). If Jas's vocals were brought up a little more in the mix, these kind of songs could do more for the anti-drug campaigns than any "Just Say No" wimpiness.

As for the sex, The Kill likes it hot, sweaty, and full of more kinks than any magazine Larry Flynt could come up with. Take "All Tied Up," which out-guns Guns N' Roses for sheer shock value: "Baby I'm an 8-ball I could fuck a brick wall / And I could really break you but you're all fucked up." You really should give the lyric sheet a read just to comprehend the whole thing - they cram more into this song than I've seen on a hardcore movie on HBO. As for "Gina's Penis," well... urk... the song says it all. 'Nuff said.

Where The Kill go wrong are in three areas. First, the length of the disc (as we hinted at in the beginning of the review); 30 minutes is not enough for me to fairly gauge a band's strengths and weaknesses. Second, it would be nice to hear Jas higher in the mix and to hear Jameson actually go wild on some guitar solos. Finally, how's about cutting out some of the cock-rock? It's not cool when Aerosmith does it, it's not cool when The Kill beat it into the ground.

Where The Kill could really have something is in songs like "Sister Skeleton," a song about a broken woman who still seems to find a way of escaping her own personal hell. The musical side of this needed a little more development (I heard some chords that I couldn't resolve in my head, but otherwise not bad), but The Kill can really paint strong pictures of the downtrodden in society. I'd rather hear a song about that than, aah, a well-hung woman.

The Kill are still very much in the youth of their career, and I think once they find their focus, they'll be a serious force to deal with in the rising world of hard rock. But this CD, with all its strengths, shows they still need to do their homework.

Rating: C+

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© 1998 Christopher Thelen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Forbidden Records, and is used for informational purposes only.