Viva Stereo – Roar Lion Roar

2 stars (out of 5)

2

Viva Stereo - Roar Lion RoarViva Stereo are a four piece band, who are all from different parts of the UK. Roar Lion Roar is the third a

nd last in a trilogy of albums that the band have released in the last few years.

The opening track ‘Another Night Out’ starts with a weird techno beat, and then kicks in with the acoustic guitar. To be honest with you nothing stands out very much about the song, it even takes over a minute and a half for the singing to kick in. The lead singer has quite an ordinary voice, almost like a duller version of Blur’s front man Damon Albarn. At about three minutes it gets a bit more upbeat and rocky when the guitars start going, but unfortunately it’s just too late in the song, and I think the album needed a much stronger opening track.

The second song ‘Glass’ was pretty similar to the last, but the only difference was it had the flute/pan pipes of some kind playing in the background. I did like the lyrics in this one though which were quite sweet. Again it didn’t stir any major emotions in me, but it was quite a gentle relaxing song.

The third track ‘This is not an exit’ really didn’t do anything for me. I don’t like the way the songs take so long to get into the action, they don’t grab your attention that way. Candythief sings vocals on this one and I did really like her voice, but I thought the track was too dull and didn’t do her voice justice.

The next song ‘Knee High Boots’ was quite acoustic sounding again, and the singing started quite early which was refreshing. I liked the harmony and contrast with the male and female voices which somehow seemed to work much better than just the man singing on his own. This song was definitely different to anything I have heard before, but I’m not sure if it would do too well in the chart as I feel it might be too niche for some.

The sixth track ‘Pariah State’ was absolutely awful. It started off with an electro beat and weird beeping and keyboard sounds, which just didn’t work. To be honest it sounded like a totally different song to the rest of the album. I really didn’t like the song, the droning voice and over experimentation with the music didn’t gel well.

The last track ‘Suffocation’ was actually very refreshing after some of the other drivel on the album. I liked the use of guitar on this, and the singer’s voice which suited the lyrics. It’s a real shame that this song was last on the album as it was actually pretty decent, but I suspect a lot of people may have stopped listening by now.

My songs so skip (and there are quite a few) would be

the boring ‘Another Night Out’, the droning ‘Pariah State’, the bizarre ‘The Seaward’, the very melancholy ‘Teenage Dreams’ and ‘Everything goes wrong.’ My songs to listen to are ‘Knee High Boots’, the beautiful and soulful ‘Last Living Hope’, the rocking ‘War Paint’ and ‘Suffocation.’

Overall I didn’t particularly like this album. Although there were two or three decent tracks, the very bad far outweighed the good. There were a couple of promising moments when I thought Viva Stereo could be quite good but then I quickly changed my mind. I think the problem with this band is they are trying to do too much at one time; they should find a sound that works and then stick to it. If Viva Stereo can work out exactly what they’re trying to say, then they could have the potential to be pretty good

Comments

2 Responses to “Viva Stereo – Roar Lion Roar”
  1. John says:

    i couldn’t disagree more with this review..as per usual a band gets criticised for trying to do something different. Just because you can’t pigeonhole them and don’t like challenging music doesn’t mean its “drivel”..and no i’m in no way related to the band or even friends with them before you say. Maybe if you gave the record a chance rather than an inevitable ‘one listen’…or maybe
    Some songs need to take longer to kick in because it works that way..if your attention span doesn’t last that long then i assume you are about 16. Free your mind. ‘knee High Boats’ is a Glasvegas rip-off..surely you’ve heard of them?!

    This is the review where i got into this record and subsequently bought it..i suggest people read this as well to get a balanced
    view:
    http://www.theregoesthefear.com/2008/09/bands-to-watch-32-viva-stereo.php

  2. Jen Pyle says:

    To be fair it is exactly what it says – a review, and I did say it is my personal taste, fair enough if you don’t agree but there’s no need to be rude about someone’s personal opinion! And no I’m not 16 by the way!