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CD REVIEW: Terracotta Pigeons - Venomous Candy (EP)

by: Cyrus Rhodes


"Terracotta Pigeons Rock the House"







Artist: Terracotta Pigeons (teat. Steven Smith)

CD: Venomous Candy

Label: Mammoth Moth Productions

Website: http://www.terracottapigeons.com/

Genre: Hard Rock, Alternative Rock, Psychedelic Rock

Sounds Like: Weezer, Fishbone, Soundgarden, Faith No More, Alice In Chains, The Toadies to Tool.

Technical Grade: 7/10

Production/Musicianship Grade: 7/10
Commercial Value: 8/10
Overall Talent Level: 8/10
Songwriting Skills: 7/10
Performance Skill: 7/10
Best Songs: The Black Devine, Fury

Weakness: A few short sided songs, more solo segments, EP release



The new EP release:  Venomous Candy from Australia’s own Terracotta Pigeons features six tracks which were recorded during pre-production for a full length album which was put on hold at the start of 2013.  With writing of that album back underway, Venomous Candy is a clearing out of the closet, a transitional EP for you to listen to, download & share. Influences include: Mammoth Moth Productions.  Drawing on influences by artists such as Fishbone, Soundgarden, Faith No More, Muse and Alice in Chains. Terracotta Pigeons is the solo project and performing moniker of emerging Australian producer, multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Steven Smith.

The CD kicks things off with well with “Animal” a slamming rock groove that serves up driving rock rhythm against no holds barred guitar driven vibe with  heartfelt vocals from smith that takes no prisoners. Track 2 “Fury” shifts gears a bit with the title track a melodic  follow-up piece that serves up an impressive follow-up piece that flows and ebbs it’s way though to emotional fruition with methodical musical build, compelling lyrical content meshed against catchy keyboard and guitar ambience. Track 3, the title track keeps things rocking with its mesmerizing guitar riffs, catchy percussion and off the charts musical intensity. As the CD quickly unfolds I can hear influences ranging from Weezer, Fishbone, Soundgarden, Faith No More, Alice In Chains, The Toadies and even Tool. The music has everything you would expect from a high octane power driven hard-rock CD. The musical style refuses to be pinned down, the vocals are grittyl. The guitar playing is hot to the touch but there are also touches of Alternative Rock but with a modern Psychedelic-Hard-Rock aftertaste. The vocal style from Smith works extremely well with this style of music with its stereotypical jagged edge delivery. I might add his timing is spot on and his vocal intensity is off the charts. I also noticed a few well placed vocal harmonies and impressive drumming along the way. Rhythm section - lays down the low end groove thick as a brick with a few psychedelic keyboard accents and sporadic percussive accents here and there. What I like most about Terracotta Pigeons (feat. Steven Smith) is its sheer intensity; note for note and song for song unpredictability. Like a heavy weight boxer the songs keep coming at you one after the other - with no sign of letting up. From amazing “Black Devine” to mesmerizing  The End"  this EP pretty much has something for just about everyone.   

Track 1 feels like an incomplete statement to me. I wish there were more solo guitar segments throughout. I typically deduct 1 start for EP releases. The full length release is the most complete snapshot to judge an artists by at any given point in time.  

This latest release Tarracotta Pigeons (feat. Steven Smith) is a solid musical statement from start to finish. Its strength – the raw song for song intensity that keeps coming at you. Smith is clearly a music mastermind having the majority of this production work himself. No doubt he is a total riot to check out live in the back clubs of Australia. The music is dirty, rock solid, heavy and consistent and all about blowing your mind.  Like a heavy weight fighter this CD packs a powerful punch, and goes the full 12 rounds with no sign of letting up. Like a 1-2 punch the song keep coming at you, one after the other until you’re ready to tap out. What am I trying to say? Terracotta Pigeons (teat. Steven Smith) rock the house.

Cyrus Rhodes