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Album Review

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes – Blossom

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes Blossom

‘Blossom’ proves Carter is still capable of standing up the hairs on the back of your neck.

Label: International Death Cult
Released: 14th August 2015

Rating: ★★★★

There aren’t many modern rock icons like Frank Carter. No matter how many times he vows to step away from music, he’s always dragged back by hordes of rabid fans, eager to lap up anything the firebrand might put his name to next. This time backing himself with members of The Ghost Of A Thousand, the earliest teasers of The Rattlesnakes promised to bring back the snarling side that made Carter such a punk-rock pin-up back in the Gallows days – a far cry from his indie-baiting, patchy Pure Love stopgap, and a welcome return to the heavier fold.

Experimentation seems to have given way to a desire to cram in another high-gain guitar line at every opportunity. Carter brings forth moments of his signature grin-inducing madness, but for every vocal-chord splitting wail of “even on my own, you can’t stop me,” as in opener The Juggernaut, there’s a ‘Fangs’ waiting round the corner, its ode to “golden legs – they hypnotise” an unwelcome hark back to the needlessly objectifying cock-rock of old.

When Carter’s not making your skin crawl, ‘Blossom’ proves he’s still capable of standing up the hairs on the back of your neck, though – the sucker punch of “you coward fucking scum” as ‘Paradise’ reaches its midpoint in particular. Subtle, it is not; memorable, however? You bet. Tom Connick