To be critical of this is a bit like taking a Doc Marten to a kitten; it just seems wrong. The Kut is Princess Maha, a multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and PhD (positive schizotypy related research), a double award winner in the UK Songwriting Contest, and awarded Arts Council funding to create the album. She’s not an under-achiever and this is no flaccid project made by someone who wants to dabble in music while writing for the Journal of Personality and Individual Difference (as she does). It’s a solid, melodic and enjoyable heavy rock album, with plenty of solid riffs and some good singing; all it lacks is some lead breaks standing out from the chuggy riffage. That it’s a woman evokes comparisons with Paramore (not as sparkly commercial), or Evanescence (not as dark) but it’s basically hard rock done commercially, and well. Opener Animo sets the tone, a heavy but solid riff from the off, the drums simple on the snare and the kick drum up loud. It appears to be about a woman saying she’s not vulnerable but “animo” and unstoppable. Huh! (she says). Burn Your Bridges opens comparatively more reflectively, drums on the toms and more strummy guitar; there are flashes of more screamy vocals but also some hints of old rock n roll. Not Here For Love is a heads-down rocker. On My Own is poppier and with a catchy chorus. Runaways (maybe a nod to Joan Jett) is the same, in fact the latter part of the album is all commercial. It’s a decent album if you want something loud you can nod your head to / tap your feet to / play in the car, and really impressive that it’s all her. She has got a band; she could perhaps hire a shredding guitarist. Paste, Copy Kut
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