Break The Silence
6

  • McQueen
  • Demolition
  • 2007-01-22

McQueen are a young, all-female four piece from Brighton who no doubt would like to break up the boyband-hegemony (Panic! At The Disco, Fall Out Boy, et al) within punk rock circles. This debut is unlikely to do that, but nevertheless has its moments.

The majority of Break The Silence is based around that now-standard structure pioneered by the Pixies, forced into the mainstream by Nirvana. Namely low-slung, chugging bass on the verses, drum fill leading up to a buzzsaw-guitar-big-chorus. To be fair McQueen make a decent, melodic fist of this and also vary things on occasion. Examples of the former include the opener “Neurotic”, a snarling blast of self doubt wrapped up in QOTSA cover version, “Running Out Of Things To Say” and the rabble-rousing “Dirt”.

this is derivative and a bit too ‘by-the-book’, though McQueen have packed their debut with sufficient anthemic choruses and chunky riffs for it to be considered a success

I mentioned variety and McQueen do attempt to mix things up slightly, like on the (old) nu-metal of the title track (which displays singer Leah’s impressive throat shredding vocals) and the bouncy punk of “Don’t Know How To Break It To You”. However, there is a mid-album lull during the forgettable dirge of “The Line Went Dead” and the punk-rock-by-numbers of “Blinded” and this takes a sheen from the finished article, though generally there is more to like than disregard.

Generally this is derivative and a bit too ‘by-the-book’, though McQueen have packed their debut with sufficient anthemic choruses and chunky riffs for it to be considered a success. Easy on the eye, catchy enough for MTV/radio and possibly to be heard at a non-threatening punk rock night near you soon. Shit name, though.

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