Beyond the Citadel of Coup de Grâce - Bang! the Whiskey Mask
Record Label: None
Release Date: March 22, 2008
Beyond the Citadel of Coup de Grâce’s second EP release certainly is a curiosity. The record is a concept album telling a tale of the Old West. To their credit, between the rough music, awesome artwork, and effective lyrics (full of references to gunslingers, tumbleweed, and whiskey), they really nail this gimmick down to a tee. This is definitely a striking album from a band with a sense of humor. At 20 minutes long, Beyond the Citadel of Coup de Grâce don’t shoot themselves in the foot by expanding the concept out too far. The record pulls you into the story and doesn’t let go until closer “He’ll Burn the Apostrophe” fades out. But when you look beyond the superficial aesthetic of the record, what you will find beneath is an eclectic, occasionally unbalanced but ultimately highly enjoyable EP.
The band certainly does have a unique blending of styles; the vocalist has a distinctly poppy delivery, which when counterbalanced by the gruff almost doom metal styled screaming, certainly creates an interesting dynamic. The guitars alternate between intricate hardcore strumming and metallic crunching, with a distinct classic arena rock feel that wouldn’t be too out of place on a Kiss record. “Twins” and “When Tall Felt Crown” demonstrate the two guitar and vocals styles, shifting between crunchy full-bore speed metal and shiny deliberate emo. “Six Led One” is the true showcase of Beyond the Citadel of Coup de Grâce’s style, as well as the concept, with awesome guitar riffs, a fun chorus, and strong lyricism. If you only hear one song from this record, make it this one. “He’ll Burn the Apostrophe,” while certainly their most ambitious number, doesn’t hold the listener’s attention as effective as its contemporaries, due to its general lack of cohesiveness and some frankly annoying stretches. That said, the song is still decent, mainly thanks to its bouncy chorus.
Bang! the Whiskey Mask is a good EP in an awesome package. The actual quality of the music is of a good standard, especially for fans of heavier music, and the variety helps the 20-minute disc remain fresh after the first promise-filled listen. However, the album really shines with the concept in mind (it does conjure up images from John Wayne movies). It’s not life changing or revolutionary, but it is a damn fun record, and when it comes to unsigned bands, you could do a hell of a lot worse than Beyond the Citadel of Coup de Grâce, one of the few unsigned band that actually seemed varied and inspired enough to actually pull off a good full-length album. Bang! the Whiskey Mask is easy to recommend to the heavy music fan who wants some variety and spice in their music, because this record certainly delivers plenty of both.
this made my ears bleed in a horrible way. i was quite annoyed by how pretentious the singer came off. the music was alright at best. nothing special but somewhat entertaining to listen to. nothing i would ever spend money on or, pay to go see live for that matter. overall if it came on my shuffle i wouldnt skip it but i wouldnt deliberately listen to it.