Friday, August 12, 2005

Review: Aroarah- Aroarah (2005)

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Aroarah
(2005)
self-released

Only a year out of high school, the members of the all-girl rock outfit Aroarah  have been making quite a name for themselves in their native California - and beyond. With two previous demo EPs and a spot on The Van's Warped Tour in San Diego, Aroarah has now unleashed their third recording for mass metal consumption. The band sparks comparisons to Kittie and The Donnas  with their mix of grrl-punk attitude and the occasional snarls from frontwoman Lydia Gavin, but there's a quite deal more to be heard on the 4 tracks of this EP.

"Open Eyed", my favorite track, gets the EP started and serves as a fine showcase of what the band is all about. A sultry lead gives way to a plucky riff before Lydia hits the mic with her polished voice. With just a hint of Avril Lavigne in her style, Lydia displays significant versatility and range as she progresses from a no-nonsense, alternative rock style to angered shouts (well-supported by the other members of the band). The rhythm section of drummer Mackenzie Knoester and bass player Chelsea Baker lay down a catchy groove, drawing you in and keeping the song cemented in your head. The next track, "Summer Lies", comes off a bit deceptively as Lydia lures you in with a very popish vocal style before unleashing violent shrieks as guitarist Morgan Knoester punishes you with some heavy riffage. Another highlight for me was the opening riff of "My Shoulders to Yours". Both wistful and sexy, the piece serves as a perfect introduction to lyrics of hopeless romance. The backing vocal harmonies during the choruses lend the song, for me at least, an air of a Motown ballad - juiced up with weighty riffs and Lydia's emotive style.

Aroarah remind me a lot of bands like Veruca Salt and L7 in the way that they can be both sensual and driven without coming across as disjointed or inconsistent. The girls take their ability to a higher level from start to finish on this EP, and should do well for themselves in the modern rock scene. Besides their indisputable talent, the band also shows a flare for promotional innovation by offering, on the enhanced EP, the means to download a bonus track. Thinking outside of the box and backing it up with quality music is a sure-fire recipe for success.


Track Listing
1 Open Eyed 3:18
2 Summer Lies 3:31
3 My Shoulders to Yours 2:35
4 In Dreams 3:16



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