by Martin Popoff
Like the third and fourth Skid Row records, like the hair bands sent to CMC in the mid-’90s, like Velvet Revolver, like Brides of Destruction, like The Cult, and like that last Tesla album, Deuce puts up this wall of sound that is hard to break through to love what’s on the other side. The formula is, at the core, a post-grunge that is nü, this idea of huge, circular, bassy Iommi (solo) riffs, which drop out for some sort of treated, wheezy, mixed-back vocal over something quiet, often a bass line. And yes, those vocals… Hard to believe that’s the same Joe LeSte of Bang Tango fame. He and the rest of the band are so corrected and corporate-sounding, every trendy texture thrown on the guitar, the bass, the vocals. The drum track is groovy, but “correctly” so, cymbals smashed and then controlled. The guys all have the same haircut and the same eyeliner, going for that “I guess authentic rock bands look like this now” thing. It feels so examined, manufactured to be some sort of real and big stadium rock record cos Velvet Revolver sold, right?