For Fans Of
Notoriously flamboyant in most things they do, Sydney rockers Gay Paris have blessed fans with their latest offering, ‘Ladies And Gentlemen, May We Present To You: The Dark Arts‘, an indulgent and ludicrous take on the local hard rock and heavy metal scene that flirts with stoner rock, and heavy metal in the best possible way.
Opening with the energising ‘Draw, You Harlequin Saints!‘, the album thrusts listeners into the dark yet upbeat atmosphere that is simply Gay Paris. ‘She Haunts Every Dance Floor‘ follows and initially provides the full-length with catchy riffs, and even catchier hooks as well as an interesting middle section that, dare we say, could even invoke some groovy dancing. Furthermore, ‘The Dirt Eaters‘ continues the fast-tempo stoner vibes carried along by the previous two tracks, presenting a fair bit of dissonance to the record, while ‘It Sleeps In Caves‘ is slower compared to its predecessors and even showcases influence from Mastodon with the vocals reminiscent of Troy Sanders himself. ‘The Sackcloth Saint Of The Cornfield‘ is yet another of the catchier songs littered throughout; boasting an extremely upbeat and fun hook as well as cheery melodies and riffs. Don’t let this positivity discourage you however, it is still crushingly heavy, going down like an anthem.
Reaching the halfway point, ‘LAGMWPTYTDA‘ (what a mouthful, even in abbreviated form) presents nothing but fast-paced, up-tempo ripper songs, and, thankfully, the record doesn’t slow down. ‘Flintlock Barbara Goes Boom‘ is yet another stoner rock song that crushes your spine with its heaviness, and a middle section that proves that you don’t need to tune to drop A# to be heavy. We’d hate to draw the same comparison, but the following track ‘Ember Season‘ legitimately sounds like it could have been on Mastodon’s ‘Once More ‘Round The Sun’, it is a fast and loud rock and roll number that continues Gay Paris‘ endeavour of rowdiness. ‘Cult Slang‘ is a vicious and bluesy song that rips into the album sporting an infectious riff that will stay in your head long after you finish listening to the album as well as containing an outro with some of the most intense drumming you will hear this year. Whereas, ‘The Devil And Why You’re Not Along‘ features a slight theatrical feel as well as boasting a jammy blues solo section that melds metal and blues rock not seen since Motorhead. Closer ‘If Beasts Pray‘ completes the album with a slow paced epic that seems looming and eerie. Equally, it features possibly the heaviest chorus on the album, leaving listeners with a very rock/pop/punk style outro walk out, reminiscent of something off Protest The Hero’s ‘Kezia’.
Gay Paris’ ‘Ladies And Gentlemen, May We Present To You: The Dark Arts’ is an extremely enjoyable listen and one of the better and interesting releases from a local band in 2015. With solid instrumentation and standout vocals (Luke’s gurgling voice is unbelievably heavy), and occasional melodies – Gay Paris’ latest LP is something listeners cannot sleep on. So, if you’re a fan of the Sydney based boys, a fan of stoner rock/blues/heavy metal or even if you’re just interested in some fun and heavy music, be sure to check out this release.
1. Draw, You Harlequin Saints!
2. She Haunts Every Dance Floor
3. The Dirt Eaters
4. It Sleeps In Caves
5. The Sackcloth Saint Of The Cornfield
6. Flintlock Barbara Goes Boom
7. Ember Season
8. Cult Slang
9. The Devil And Why You’re Not Alone
10. If Beasts Pray