Monday, April 20, 2009

The Burning Hell

Okay, so they are only 10% local content, but I'm still going to talk about them. "The Burning Hell" the ten piece band from Peterborough Ontario (and other places) seem to be catching a bit of that ol' zeitgeist action as they came into town for a three night stop over here at CBTG's on their cross Canada tour. The place was packed to the gills for the each of their three shows. They seem to have developed a taste or dare I say a chemical dependency for St. John's as this is their third time coming out here in the last year or so and have added local sweetheart Alison Corbett (aka Black Molly) to their roster. The Burning Hell have a ton of infectious energy and just drip charisma on stage. They were in town this time to promote their new album "Baby" (going so far as bringing Burning Hell member Jenny Omnichord's tiny newborn Otis along for the trek)

"Baby" is the album that finally got their sound right. While their previous album "Happy Birthday" had some strong material in it; the mix was weak, the tempo's lagged and it just lacked that spark of charisma and just didn't present the band very well. The new album "Baby" sounds fresh and full and the songs rollick along a zippy, poppy jaunt. Front man Mathias Kom is a master wordsmith with a masters degree who has way more good lines then a songwriter should be allowed. He has a deep droll baritone delivery that sort of instantly recalls Kurt Wagner of Lambchop with the important distinction of being tuneful, entertaining and not crap. Mathias's lyrics are spread on quite liberally with great breadth and depth of detail, but he never forgets the importance of a catchy hook or sing-a-long chorus. Occasionally, the large volume of verbiage can come across as a bit forced and drain a bit of the punch and drama from the song but with lines like "We're all line dancing in a furnace of sex and misfortune" or "So out with the adenoids and in with Ballads" in there it's an easy sin to forgive. Anyway, they are a grand mess of talents and influences and I felt compelled to take a few videos at their Saturday show. The sound and video quality came out shit, even by the already low standards of my ancient digital camera it's shit quality, but I still felt the need to document an amazing show. Even if you can't see or hear it very well.
Anyway, buy their album and go to their shows if you have the chance.