Star*Rats

Screw The Consequences

Written by: TL on 25/10/2009 16:52:37

Star*Rats are a Danish/Swedish quartet located partly in Copenhagen, partly in Malmö, and they have released three records, the latest of which, "Screw The Consequences", I have been trying to figure out what to make of for the past week or so. One thing is certain though, and that is that you can't possibly write anything about the band without using terms like "original rock'n'roll", because Star*Rats are without a doubt a hard rockin' ensemble, coming complete with tattoos, denim, rock star attitude and imagery that references both The Ramones and the classic Jack Daniels logo.

Unsurprising it is then, to find that a solid portion of the songs on this record of theirs are relatively straight forward rockers, played with lot's of southern/western style guitar-playing, a punk rock drum beat and a singer that sounds like he's got a case of chronical hang-over voice. You know what to expect and you get what you expect, and if you're part of Star*Rats' target audience, you will probably have no trouble letting yourself be convinced exercise those neck muscles when you hear them. The first three tracks are fine examples of this, with the third "Looosin' It", being the immediately most charming one, including a funny little episode where the band has to yell at the guitarist to end his solo.

This kind of humor and attitude is laced into every booze-drenched second of this band's music, and booze-drenched it is, because there's more than one song here that's basically about getting fucked up. No nonsense involved. Think of the other Danish band, Rock Hard Power Spray, and then add cowboy hats and a top hat, then you can figure out pretty much what Star*Rats are like, because like I mentioned before, there's not only a western feeling to the guitar-slides, but as you can hear in the opening mini-solo of "As I Stay", guitarist Post probably has a healthy influence in good old Slash.

So yeah, like I said, if you like your rock'n'roll oldschool and without bullshit, then there's enough of that here to keep you satisfied, because that is exactly the 'default' mode in which Star*Rats write songs. Personally though, I find the tracks that stand out from the balls out Guitar Heroism the most interesting. The previously mentioned mid-paced "As I Stay" is a good pointer towards how good of a figure Star*Rats can present when they really chase down the G'n'R inspiration, and the same applies to the 'ballad' "Land's End", coming complete with guitars that are almost Bon Jovi-ish (Think "Blaze Of Glory" or "Wanted Dead Or Alive") and complimenting female guest vocals. "I'll Be There For You" adds further variety by pulling in the other direction, aiming for a faster punk style, the likes of which Volbeat have been trying to pass off as "metal" for a while (*sigh*). Then Star*Rats are surely more enjoyable if you ask me!

The album trails of with "Boozehound", a song that, while sounding like something D.A.D could've written back in the day, also impresses you with a hilarious outro where pretty much every brand of booze known to man is mentioned. Pretty awesome, but after it's over, I'm still left trying to decide whether I really like this album or not. It's hard to shake the feeling that this kind of thing has been done to dead, and while I admire the number of tracks offered, listening to the same whiskey drenched vocals, more attitude-filled than beautiful as you might imagine, for song upon song of single-minded retrospective rock'n'roll gospel does have potential for getting tedious. Star*Rats drive the record home safely by having the good sense to vary their expression like I've described, but in order for them to be graded as more than a solid batch of good times music, it wouldn't hurt with just a little bit more originality.

7

Download: Looosin' It, Land's End, I'll Be There For You, Boozehound
For The Fans Of: Rock Hard Power Spray, Guns 'N Roses, D.A.D, Volbeat
Listen: myspace.com/starratsdk

Release Date 28.09.2009
Swedmetal Records
Provided by Target ApS

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