Ever since Royal Blood were announced as a support act for Arctic Monkeys back in November 2013, it was only a matter of time before this Brighton-based duo rose to succession. Is their debut album worthy of rock royalty?
Months after the wake of that legendary support slot at Finsbury Park and now with a hard-earned fan-base under their belts, Royal Blood’s self-titled debut album is finally upon us. ‘Out Of The Black’ is the perfect introduction to this band, with the astronomically heavy, low-end rumble of Mike Kerr’s bass now shattering speakers worldwide. The first few consecutive tracks of ‘Royal Blood’ are an unrelenting assault on the listener with the seductive refrains of ‘Come On Over‘ almost beckoning new fans to partake in the destruction.
‘Figure It Out‘ provokes a fervid atmosphere through an alluring falsetto that Josh Homme could easily mistake as his own. Continuing a series of direct hits, ‘You Can Be So Cruel’ and ‘Blood Hands’ somehow manages to successfully maintain the impossibly high bar set by this album’s opening tracks. The rampaging riffs of ‘Little Monster‘ alone are enough to award Royal Blood the crown of best British rock band for the foreseeable future.
‘Loose Change’ has a distinct Jack White feel, as Kerr and Thatcher continue to channel a multitude of godlike influences into their own bubbling concoction. The latter tracks of the album, ‘Careless’ and ‘Ten Tonne Skeleton’, don’t form an overly strong third act to ‘Royal Blood’ purely by comparison; yet they ultimately serve as a wholly necessary path into the welcome arms of ‘Better Strangers’.
This album hits harder than a headbutt from Zinedine Zidane and is heavier than your Mum’s weekly shop. For a band comprised solely of two people, one drum kit and one bass guitar, Royal Blood have shamed a multitude of bands who have a whole lot more at their disposal and achieve a lot less. 4/5