Published on August 23rd, 2020 | by Justin G.
Smackbound: 20/20 (Frontiers, 2020)
Well this is fun. The Frontiers label is serving up another brand new band, and despite a fairly dumb band name Smackbound is a hell of a lot of fun. The Finnish band features vocalist Netta Laurenne, who has contributed to albums from Amorphis, Battle Beast and Lordi, among others, guitarist Teemu Mantysaari (Wintersun), drummer Rolf Pilve (Stratovarius, The Dark Element), keyboardist Vili Itapelto (Heavisaurus) and bassist Tuomas Yli-Jaskari (Tracedawn). With that kind of pedigree you might expect a power metal band, but Smackbound plays high-energy rock n’ roll.
Smackbound’s debut is titled 20/20, and unlike actual 2020 it does not suck. This is such an easy album to get into. You can tell everyone is having fun and just getting into pure rock n’ roll. Some heavy metal and even symphonic elements creep in here and there, which is cool, but this one’s a rocker at heart. A kick you in the teeth kind of rocker, to be exact. If there was any doubt, songs like “Drive It Like You Stole It” and “Hey Motherfuckers” put that to rest in a hurry. “Run” and “Date With The Devil” are also standouts. There’s plenty of crunch in the riffs, and Laurenne’s vocals bring plenty of power, grit and emotion. She could be a symphonic metal star in her own right, but she rocks hard here.
20/20 is the kind of album you reach for at the end of a long week when you want to crank up the volume and punish the neighbors. This is rock n’ roll done right, and it’s not the last we’ll see of Smackbound. Check it out and play it loud.
Summary: Get ready to rock!