Artist Spotlight

Review: Von Shakes, “Bohemia”

1 Comment 8 December 2013

Review: Von Shakes, “Bohemia”

“The songs of Von Shakes are tinged with punk, alternative rock and hard rock all with a sense of commerce. No flashy moments or indulgences (some songs are only around two minutes long), and no sacrifice of musicianship.”

Artist: Von Shakes

Album: Bohemia

Genre: Rock

RIYL: Arctic Monkeys, The Clash, The Replacements

Von Shakes Bohemia

Hey, Ireland can rock.
 
My favorite band is and will always be Thin Lizzy. Rock, in particular hard rock does not get any better than that, it just doesn’t.
 
And of course there’s been all types of greats from the Emerald Isle like Van Morrison, Rory Gallagher, U2, Boomtown Rats, The Undertones, My Bloody Valentine and The Cranberries among many others.
 
And now we have Von Shakes - a very fine band who get it done with an equal amount of muscle, grit and melody. This four-piece have a strong sonic template which echoes veteran acts like The Alarm, The Clash and The Replacements and recent gems such as Arctic Monkeys, The Strokes and Airborne Toxic Event.
 
Bohemia is an album you know has value, because oftentimes at 12 songs a listener can’t wait for the record to end. Not so here. Each of these 12 tracks stands out and stands alone. Whether it’s the energetic opener “Robinson Crusoe,” the lively “Talk n Crawl,” the crunch and melodic feel of “Headaches,” or the exuberant, fuzz-vocal led gem “Last Day On Earth” the listener is in for a good time.
 
The songs of Von Shakes are tinged with punk, alternative rock and hard rock all with a sense of commerce. No flashy moments or indulgences (some songs are only around two minutes long), without sacrificing musicianship. The guitars are crafty and weave in and out of the songs with clever lead breaks and melodic lines. “Your Own Holiday” in particular has excellent guitar work sounding a bit like The Strokes or Arctic Monkeys.
 
“Sit, Wait & Pray” has a darker edge with hard-driving sounds and the guitars cranked up the way they should be. “Control” has a spirited groove and moving bass line aided by sterling drumming, thus adding something of a danceable element. There’s a hint of some 80s dance/goth music here and it really works.
 
“Bali II” is a real standout. Catchy but still gritty, “Bali II” has all the elements of a fan favorite and a hit if such a thing is possible in these disposable times. No reason at all this song couldn’t garner radio airplay, but that is such a tough thing to acquire these days. Once again Von Shakes make good use of dynamics building things up from verse to verse.
 
Paddy Brazel (vocals/guitar), Hugh O’Reilly (guitar/backing vocals), Cillian McSweeney (bass/backing vocals), and Ryan Normandin (drums) really have something going here and hopefully Von Shakes will crack the US market because, quite frankly, they deserve to.


Von Shakes website: http://www.vonshakes.com/

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One Comment

  1. Love this song and sharing!


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