X Ray Cat Trio / “Bloody Deeds” (2014)
The X Ray Cat Trio‘s EP “Bloody Deeds” has all the virtues of surf rock, rockabilly and old style rock’n’roll. Their sound is retroesque: a tasteful trip back through musical history with a double bass and a hollow-bodied guitar, something akin to Link Wray’s “Rumble” but with enough changes to create their own brand of sound.
Things are a little bit “vamped” up on Bloody Deeds, with themes of betrayal and death. With the opening strains of “Executioner” you get the impression that this EP is a dark and serious affair, but there is still an increasingly infectious rhythm to balance it out – you might have been brought down, but at least you can still have some fun whilst it happens. Even in “Something Died”, with lyrics like “something inside of me died”, the song still sounds lively and enjoyable.
“Bloody Deeds” does feature a few instrumentals, and having more than one instrumental track on an EP can often lose the listeners’ attention if they’re not a ‘serious music-fan’ (single quotes of sarcasm, of course). It’s very common for rock musicians to write long sprawls that don’t really do much for the listener (for example, if they were included only to show-off to other musicians), but this isn’t the case with the X Ray Cat Trio. Each piece is interesting, and with there being no lyrics you will find yourself making up your own stories along the way. For example, “I Was Cruel To You”‘s sound matches the title nicely, the music conveying the regret with ease; the song gives the impression that something is slumping about the house, feeling sorry for itself. “Miss October” feels sentimental but as it is in a minor-key, it appears to be telling of a loss or a long slow goodbye. Extra points go to the band for their creative storytelling whilst not having to revert to the old “three chords and the truth” formula.
You can listen to the EP below or purchase a copy on the X Ray Cat Trio bandcamp here. You can also “like” the band on Facebook here to keep up-to-date – the X Ray Cat Trio are in the process of recording new material to be released at the end of the year.