Detroit punks hone their ample strengths on a third album that's pure rock 'n' roll
Blood Red Shoes - 'Blood Red Shoes'
The duo return to the spit-and-sawdust rock'n'roll of their first two albums
If ‘In Time To Voices’ found them attempting to elevate themselves beyond not-quite cult status by adding a layer of polish and precision, their fourth album marks a return to the spit-and-sawdust rock’n’roll of their first two. It sounds like an acknowledgement of who they are and what they’re good at – not only is the record called ‘Blood Red Shoes’, but the opening track, a discordant instrumental thrash clocking in at under two minutes, goes by the name of ‘Welcome Home’. What Blood Red Shoes are best at, however, is playing live, and this album, like the three that preceded it, doesn’t quite capture the tooth-and-claw ferocity of that experience: the coiled, coital menace of ‘Grey Smoke’ and the pummelling psych-garage of ‘The Perfect Mess’ will always be better experienced in a dark, sticky-walled sweatbox with a few hundred strangers. Despite that (and a couple of unfortunate missteps, like the quiet-loud alt.drear of ‘Far Away’) 'Blood Red Shoes' is probably the duo’s most satisfying effort to date – frustratingly short of the “quiet triumph” they sing about on closing track ‘Tightwire’, but an admirable racket nonetheless.
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