Eaton Cage - The Curve 
Eaton Cage - The Curve

2014 has been the year of the duo as confirmed by the huge success of Royal Blood and the ongoing popularity of The Black Keys. So there's no blame attached for the glut of duos that have followed in the wake of these acts but it is getting harder to tell them apart. Nevertheless, Derbyshire lads Eaton Cage deserve their turn and this, their debut album, seems like a good place to start. Starting with 'So Young And Out Of Love' you can immediately hear that Black Keys sound in the thick, groove based guitar riffs but there is something different in the drumming which is more Black Sabbath. 'Firestone Hill' has some seriously heavy guitars but the vocals seem to fit more with the 80s indie of Joy Division or the Fall. 'By Every Hour' is a more laboured, plodding affair while 'You Should Be Here' has a sinister tinge to it and 'Lens That Sold Them' is a Led Zeppelin meets Johnny Cash ballad which could do with some better vocals effects but works otherwise.

Things get back to the dirty grooves on 'No Fences In Little Eaton' which has a great riff and vibe but the vocals just don't quite match up as they come out a bit flat, tuneless and lacking in power. 'No Heart' has a great White Stripes-esque quirkiness to it while 'Drunken Dutch-Door' is relentless in its pursuit of the spirit of rock'n'roll. There is a lighter feel to 'Sweet Valley' but the vocal melodies don't really cut it before the album closes with 'Three Hundred Miles Away' which could be the entrance music for a particularly evil wrestler or the theme tune for a documentary about a brothel in Soho. I like these guys and they've got some great ideas but I think they're best bet would come in breaking the duo mould and employing a bassist with a dirty rock'n'roll voice to give them that extra kick. There must be swathes of bassists just wondering the streets at the moment so I'm sure one of them can sing.

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