( Please scroll down past band photo and allow a few short download seconds for your two FREE, full preview cuts to start playing )
80s rock band Belly are back and they’ve just dropped their first record in over two decades named “Dove” recorded and produced by Tom Gorman along with Paul Q. Kolderie. It’s the third album from Belly following 1995’s smash King and their ’93 debut Star.
And it is EX-ceptional!
Belly Front person, Tanya Donelly was one of the most crucial figures in the lineage of Indie Rock. To refresh memories, she was in the middle of the rise of 80s alt rock sound playing guitar for Throwing Muses, the band lead by her stepsister, Kristin Hersh, along with frequent touring partners The Pixies and two of the most influential musical aggregates that helped pave the way for the indy explosion that occurred Stateside and then globally in the early 90s.
And while most musicians would count themselves fortunate to be part of one influential band, Donelly then formed The Breeders ( see www.easternsurf.com recent Breeders review posted March 13’th 2018 ) with Pixies bassist and good buddy Kim Deal. Though they only made the one record together titled Pod, the album made a significant impact on none other than Kurt Cobain, who always credited how profound of an inspiration that was on both his and Nirvana’s short, careening musical path.
The balance of Donelly’s swooping lyrical vocal grace and Bellys diverse, driving musical force is Dove’s most compelling aural attraction. “Artifact” mines the same country-rock vein as Star’s title track, conjuring a sound that’s heavy and comforting at once. “Faceless” opens with an acoustic fake-out before shifting into a full blown rocker. On “Stars Align,”Donelly proclaims, “You’re gonna give someone a heart attack,” and then the song becomes a pretty love anthem whose clichés only confirm Belly’s impressive self-confidence.
Track 04: Faceless / 4:58
Track 07: Army Of Clay / 3:40
On “Suffer the Fools,” Donelly sings about a breakup or a divorce that ends amicably with a rare candor: “Keep on pissing me off,” she sings amid acoustic guitar and strings that recall the psychedelic Sixties band Love, “because I’d rather suffer you than suffer the fools.” On the apocalyptic-sounding stand-out “Army of Clay,” with its Twilight Zone guitar intro and Donelly’s cutting vocal style, she sings, “You can’t be brave if you’re not afraid/You can’t be saved and come out unscathed.”
The woman is a rock legend long flying a stealthy – if not infrequently – flight path but the excellen, sound barrier breaking sonics of “Dove” may once again raise her and Belly from a blip to a well deserved Identified Flying Object rocking on the international musical radar of our lives. – Mez –