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Inglorious – Ride To Nowhere

Inglorious
Ride To Nowhere
by Anton Sanatov at 05 March 2019, 7:43 PM

“Buy the ticket, take the ride.” Hunter S. Thompson

Like that trite old saying goes – life is a rollercoaster; and so is Hard Rock. After all, this is a genre that is designed to grab you by the gonads and take you on an adventure – as frivolous as it may be. It’s brash, it’s loud, it’s unpredictable (at least that’s how it’s supposed to be) and we love it so; the guitars, the poise, the ever-present proverbial “feel”, and its rust-resistant immortality.

Yet not everyone has the gut flora to handle the loops and turns that a good Hard Rock record is supposed to have; and thus too many bands with weak stomachs venture into this life only to lose their lunch at the first bend. However, two albums in and coming in fast with their third, London’s INGLORIOUS appear to show no sign of queasiness on their musical trip, and are looking to fill more seats on their newest offering “Ride To Nowhere” - so let’s see if the ride is worth the price.

The band start off slow and steady with “Where Are You Now?” - a smooth but biting rocker that strikes a few chords whilst mostly maintaining and even, bass driven pace. INGLORIOUS’ accessible style is certainly easy to digest, although it does leave you lusting for a bit more zest, which is perhaps why you’ll want to keep listening on.

The band get a bit more lively and funky on tracks like “Freak Show” and “Queen”, which see them employ bluesy licks and shaking grooves that sprinkle the tracks with shades of acts like BADLANDS and BULLETBOYS, and show them getting nasty and glittery whilst maintaining an appropriate degree of class – a feat not many can achieve.

INGLORIOUS are also not afraid of slowing down either. As they pull into tracks “Never Alone” and “I Don’t Know You” we are treated to all the emotional baggage of strong ballads, but without the bitter aftertaste of sappiness. These tracks are strict and compelling, evoking band’s like THE BLACK CROWES and some of the more formidable songwriters of the 1980’s music scene.

Another thing that stands out about this “ride” of a record is its consistency; it simply refuses to let up. Even towards the end, where some bands choose to stuff a few fillers to bulk up the length, INGLORIOUS pack two of the record’s most exciting head-turners in “While She Sleeps” - a bass-heavy, toe curling, stuff-strutting Rock ‘N’ Roll heartbreaker – and the title track “Ride To Nowhere” - a progressive, heavy, mysterious banger that sees the band reach into their bag of tricks and pull out a handful. This record really wants to be played from cover to cover.

Unfortunately, for all the pats on the back that it deserves, this album will also get a few kick up the ass.  For example, whilst “Ride To Nowhere” is fervent in its pursuit of varying dynamics, the album still winds up sounding a touch flat and underwhelming. This is indeed baffling, and could perhaps be explained by the incredibly over-compressed production. The sound is often so strangulated that you may find yourself gasping for a breath or two by the end of a track; which is a shame considering how superb the songwriting is. The performances of the band, however, are top-notch; particularly that of frontman Nathan James, whose lungs continue to belt out hurricanes regardless of the aforementioned vacuum of a production.

Overall – see that Hunter S. Thompson quote again. “Ride To Nowhere” is a cool and collected Hard Rock record; and whilst its twists and turns may often lack the desired excitement, it is nonetheless a fun trip. INGLORIOUS show that they’re a band who are in control of their musical destinies and they refuse to let go.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 6
Memorability: 6
Production: 5

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
  1. Where Are You Now?
  2. Freak Show
  3. Never Alone
  4. Tomorrow
  5. Queen
  6. Liar
  7. Time to Go
  8. I don’t Know You
  9. While She Sleeps
  10. Ride to Nowhere
  11. Glory Days
Lineup:
Nathan James – Vocals
Danny Dela Cruz – Guitar
Dan Stevens – Guitar
Vinnie Colla – Bass
Phil Beaver - Drums
Record Label: Frontiers Records
     


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