Bloody Hell! We’ve got a real feisty one here! If Tairrie B Murphy really is the Queen of Scream, then Sanguine‘s unhinged frontwoman Tarin Kerrey is definitely her “lady in waiting”.
Sanguine are a violently effervescent four piece from Exeter. They’ve already grabbed the attention of Slipknot’s Joey Jordison and Iron Maiden’s Adrian Smith; the latter recruiting vocalist Kerrey to guest on his solo album. DIY is the band ethic, and Sanguine’s self titled debut is just that, released through their own Sanguine Records label on February 13th… just in time for that face ripping Valentine’s Day gift.
We often complain about lack of originality, or an album being banal… Sanguine say a huge screw you to that. This album is a serious schizophrenic cluster bomb of tunes, pulling influences from all over the shop. Defining this lot effectively is like herding cats… totally futile. Within the first five tracks you have already experienced such an aural barrage, your head is spinning. Rules go out the window completely, and Sanguine give you a schizophrenic sonic beating from a different angle with each tune.
“For Love” opens us up, and it is class, a real dark grunter of a track. Quality riffage and sultry (often abrasive) vocals really hitting the mark. “Contagious” takes us to SOAD territory, by the way of a bouncing Marilyn Manson-esque snorter “Anger Song”. “Bangkok Nights” is completely deranged, delivering a vocal performance that would leave Maria Brink shitting herself. It’s not all pure insanity though; “Given Up” is pretty much middle of the road female fronted rock, bordering on radio friendly. Catchy and hook laden, a track that seeps under your skin. “A Place That You Call Home” heads into disturbing ballad territory, Kerrey showcasing her clean set of pipes, still holding the underlying menace.
The musicianship is quality, and these guys are clearly talented, but there are a few issues… The vocals are overdone and clumsy at times; in particular when backing vocals are involved. Kerrey has more than enough power to carry it herself without the need for backup. It feels like a devaluation her prowess. There is also the breakneck speed at which the band changes approach from track to track. It can feel a little too disorienting; almost over excitement of wanting to show what they can do, rather than presenting who they really are.
Sanguine offer up moments of brilliance interspersed with downright insanity, but they are a little tainted by over-enthusiasm. Not quite there yet, but definitely ones to watch.