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EP Review: The New Standard by Shotgun Rodeo

Norwegian metal band Shotgun Rodeo release their new EP The New Standard on 16th September and if you can manage to get past the terrible artwork and band name then you’ll find yourself an excellent EP.

OK, there’s plenty of metal clichés when it comes to Shotgun Rodeo – the name, the logo, the lyrics – but put that aside and you’ve got a genuinely good band and an EP that is pretty hard not to enjoy. It’s their sound that suckers you in. Imagine your typical band on Roadrunner Records in the 2000s or any of the New Wave Of Heavy Metal bands of the same era and you’re on the right track.

There might not be anything new or ground breaking here, rather the fact that in harks back to an era of quality in metal. It’s the big heavy churning riffs teamed with a groove, blast beats and proper enjoyable hooks that make Shotgun Rodeo a real prospect. With this EP coming in just shy of 30 minutes there’s proper substance that equals many modern albums.

Opener ‘Batshit Crazy’ has the basis of an excellent track but it’s in the refined brutality of ‘Uncontainable’ and the power / thrash metal mix of ‘Around the Bend’ that makes you really take notice. ‘Drawing Blood From Stone’ has a wonderfully heavy riff teamed with a structure that hints towards Pantera at their most accessible, that said the chorus couldn’t be more pop metal. Unfortunately, the only thing that lets it down in the vocal style that perhaps is a little too ‘metal’ and too clichéd with the content.

Title track ‘The New Standard’ again has the basis of a great metal track that’s turned sour by lyrics that sound like something from a 14-year-old. You can’t help but cringe. Final track ‘Scatterbrain’ is the best track on the album. It shows the real quality at the heart of Shotgun Rodeo, but by 5 tracks in it’s hard to keep forgiving the downsides.

AD Rating 6/10

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