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The Bonnevilles (Ireland): Arrow Pierce My Heart [Digipak]

Track List

>No Law in Lurgan
>My Dark Heart
>Whiskey Lingers, The
>Electric Company, The
>Arrow Pierce My Heart
>Eggs and Bread
>I Dreamt of the Dead
>I've Come Too Far for Love to Die
>Erotica Laguna Lurgana
>Man With the X Shaped Scar on His Cheek, The
>Those Little Lies
>Learning to Cope
>Who Do I Have to Kill to Get Out of Here?

Album Notes

How far can you go with just a dirty-sounding guitar and a drum kit? Farther than you might think, judging from Arrow Pierce My Heart, the third album from Irish punk-blues duo the Bonnevilles. There isn't much in the way of stylistic innovation on this album, which mines the traditional tropes of raw, post-millennial blues rock, but it's not as if folks haven't been recycling 12-bar figures for close to a century, and what the Bonnevilles lack in originality they make up in mojo. Andrew McGibbon, Jr.'s guitar work boasts plenty of primitive ferocity and a sublime distorted tone, while drummer Chris McMullan hits hard and generally stays out of the way. While the Bonnevilles boast good, gritty technique, McGibbon is also a solid vocalist and songwriter, and there's a greater depth to his tales of woe than most of his peers deliver. The Bonnevilles sound tight and naturalistic on these sessions, which have a fine sense of space, and the duo is smart enough not to overdo their sense of menace. Plenty of bands would happily play "Who Do I Have to Kill to Get Out of Here?" or "I Dreamt of the Dead" for laughs. But without overplaying their hand, the Bonnevilles deliver them straight with no chaser, and they make them work. "Erotica Laguna Lurgana" is here to show these guys have a sense of fun when they're not shaking hellhounds off their trail. In a subgenre with a lot of bands following the same template, the Bonnevilles know little differences can mean a lot. They bring just enough that's fresh on Arrow Pierce My Heart to make it a real contender in the punk-blues sweepstakes. ~ Mark Deming


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