Y.BLUES - Belong To The Barrel

Y.Blues - Belong To The Barrel

9 songs
46:31 minutes
***** **
M & O


French blues metal band Y.Blues has been around since 2007. Their name is actually a pun: why blues?, because all three musicians have a pure metal background and have played already in Renegades and Zealot. Bandleader Yaiba also wanted to accommodate the first letter of his name into the band name. Belong To The Barrel is after The Arrival the second album of this French trio from Grenoble, a great city for metal from which is also the home of Nightmare.

The album begins with acoustic guitar intro, and itís the guitar sound which is the most distinctive feature on this CD. Yaiba is using a twelve-string guitar that allows him to play totally different chords as on a regular guitar, thus creating a typical bluegrass sound. The transitions from quiet to heavier moments always work seamlessly. As a blues musician and whisky fan, Yaiba has a very rough voice that lies somewhere between Rob Zombie and Eddie Vedder, and which fits the music perfectly. The songs are not overly complex and use elements of metal, blues and occasionally even grunge. All of this always sounds very dirty. One of Y.Bluesí biggest influences is Norwegian blues musician Bjorn Berge who has a guest spot on Injustice For All.

One canít blame Y.Blues for lack of originality, because I canít come up with any other band doing the same weird blues metal hybrid. As someone who is not actually a blues fan, I have to admit that after a certain time, the guitar starts to sound a little too samey to me, so that the sixth track Walking Man with its mouth organ feels like a little break with less guitar. The following Killing The Dragon Platypus is more to my taste with its experimental approach and even some comedy elements reminding me a little of Fatal Bazooka. The penultimate The End is the most brutal track on the album, with metal elements for once dominating the blues parts, before it all ends on a more traditional note with Broken Legs (Part 2).

I have to give Y.Blues a lot of credit for doing something no one has done before. Combining metal and blues in such a way may sound unthinkable, but the trio shows that this actually works. I would have liked for a little more variety, but friends of both styles should definitely check out Belong To The Barrel as an unprecedented genre mix.

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