Wild Bird (EP)

BigBang

Grand Sport, 2008

http://www.myspace.com/smallbang

REVIEW BY: Benjamin Ray

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 03/10/2008

Oh look, another Norwegian rock/punk band.

Actually, BigBang is quite well known to those who pay attention to the music scene overseas. The trio has released six albums in Europe since 1995 and opened for the Raconteurs in 2006 when they toured Europe. They have two No. 1 albums there and one of their live discs, Radio Radio TV Sleep, is the best-selling live disc in Norwegian history.bim_ad_daily_vault_print_250

Now living in L.A., BigBang will release its full-length North American debut later this year. Wild Bird is supposed to whet that appetite, so to that end the trio includes a sampling of its sounds.

Talk about variety! The London Sun called this band “Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young with balls,” which is a good way to describe the opening title track. Folkish harmonies imbue the track with an almost Olde English feel, but the insistent guitars are thoroughly modern, giving the piece the feel of something off Led Zeppelin III mixed with Jethro Tull and even a smattering of Irish music. Something for everyone!

A healthy love of classic rock is evident in this EP, especially on “Early December,” which strongly recalls Tom Petty and Jethro Tull, especially in how the harmony vocals are very slightly behind the main vocals. The band pounds the song home, though, making it their own instead of relying on classics.

“Something Special” sounds just like a Red Hot Chili Peppers outtake from Stadium Arcadium, though it’s a little too slow and repetitive. “Hurricane Boy” is an energetic slice of rock that would work as an opening track for a concert and a good opener for the full-length later this year.

Based on this EP, that disc will definitely be one worth hearing. There’s a slight feeling that BigBang has chosen these four songs because they will appeal to American audiences, but it’s rare that four songs can feel so different but be from the same band. If a derivative band like Wolfmother can make it in the States, then certainly a more original band like BigBang that is inspired by classic rock, but not a slave to it, can make it too.

Rating: B+

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© 2008 Benjamin Ray 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 Grand Sport, and is used for informational purposes only.