REVIEW: debut ep // City Of thieves - Incinerator

For a debut EP, City of Thieves' Incinerator comes out of the gate roaring with the catchy blues drenched single of the same name, which has gotten the band some well deserved notice with the song getting airplay on Planet Rock Radio recently.


Incinerator is deeper then the title track though and City of Thieves does their best here to make sure that the listener knows they are definitely not a one trick pony as the other three tracks are just as hook filled and heavy.


Lay Me to Waste opens on a riff that is reminiscent of Velvet Revolver's work, with a hard hitting riff that is sure to get your head bobbing in time with the tune. Although the song seems to be missing something, perhaps a bridge or pre-chorus to break it up a bit and give it some dynamics, the track still is nothing to skip past as besides the hypnotizing main riff of the composition there is also a great solo from guitarist Ben Austwick which I found to be the most enjoyable on the entire EP.


Buzzed Up City is a song that seems to pay great homage to the brand of hard rock and roll that AC/DC is known for serving up, from the main riff that could have easily come screaming out of Angus Young's Gibson SG to the 'chant along' chorus which explodes out from the song and takes centre stage.


If City of Thieves is looking for a second track that might get some heavy airplay time, Buzzed Up City could be the destination they are looking for and is the best cut off the EP beyond the title track.


The fourth track, Here Comes the Shot, is sadly the weakest track off Incinerator. It almost feels like a song that would sound better live then it does on a studio recording and considering this is the bands' first effort this is probably the case here. Here comes the Shot tries to capture the same magic that Buzzed Up City did previously but falls short.


It does however feature another great solo by Austwick that unfortunately was the best part of the song, so much so that I kept returning to it as it seems miles above the song it was placed in. 


Mr. 50/50 closes the EP on much mellower note, being a live recording of an acoustic composition. Here again City of Thieves does well with it's eighties hard rock roots, with vocalist/bassist Jamie Lailey giving his all in the performance and yet again creating that atmosphere of a great rock show with the change in tone and volume to bring you down from the high speed adrenaline earlier on the EP.


The EP sounds great, with every note and vocal line carefully balanced and audible, a testament to producer Toby Jepson and Mike Frasier handling the mix. For a debut EP the sound quality and production values appear to be top notch.


All in all, for a debut EP City of Thieves seems to have a bright future ahead of them. Despite some minor flaws Incinerator is a decent debut from a band getting justified attention at the moment.


If you are a fan of hard rock with catchy chorus' from bands such as AC/DC, Aerosmith and Skid Row, this EP would be a great selection and judging by what is on this EP, I can't wait to see what they come out with next as they continue to grow and shape their career.

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Reviewer: Thomas Spychalski