Thanks to albums from the likes of Plainride, The 1968 and The Riven, 2017 has already seen a glut of great releases that hark back to the glory days of late 60’s/early 70’s style rock and proto-metal. So, with a strong whiff of patchouli oil in their nostrils it’s now the turn of relative newcomers The Judge to release their new album upon the world. But how does Tell It To The Judge stack up when compared to the quality the above named bands have to offer?
Sadly, the answer, our flare-wearing, hip shakin’, riff-lovin’ friends, is not very well!
It’s probably best to start off with the positives, of which there are a few. To start with, the album is produced perfectly with a rich analogue feel that’s perfect for this type of music and gives every instrument room to breath and shine. Secondly, guitarist Dylan Jarrett comes across as a genuinely talented player with a good ear for riffs, unfortunately this is also where some of the problems start to come to the fore.
The great thing about the type of music The Judge are emulating (to simplify things we’ll just call it ‘classic rock)’ is that the music was always so diverse, with the originators taking chances and experimenting with blues, psychedelia and/or whatever tickled their fancy at any given time. In comparison, The Judge are content to utilise the same trick over and over again, rarely diversifying from the same blueprint.
Which leads us on to the next problem! There’s a distinct lack of hooks or anything particularly memorable within these songs – this is the point in which some variety would have provided a useful distraction – and this makes for a fairly tepid experience. Look, The Judge are not a bad band, they just need to throw caution to the wind in order to be truly effective.
And that’s your lot; sentence has been passed, the court is adjourned.
Don’t like the verdict? Tell It To The Judge! 5/10