Adrenechrome are a quirky little combo from Ontario, Canada and Tales From Adrenechrome is their debut album whose stock in trade incorporates thrash inspired riffs with hints of hard rock, a dash of sludge and a smidgen of bluegrass – of all things! – here and there.
A concise seven songs in just over thirty minutes, Tales From Adrenechrome starts with the predominantly instrumental “A Familiar Face” before launching into first song proper, “Lockstep”. A pacey little number with a couple of great riffs from vocalist/guitarist Chris Friesen and guitarist Tim Kehoe, “Lockstep” ironically takes flight just as the music slows; the kind of great, big, brute of a mid-paced riff that Slayer do so well ending things on a high. Ranking prominently on the quirky scale, “Black Brubeck” is the most ‘out there’ track on offer here. Thrash and blue grass are not the most obvious bedfellows and – to be honest – it doesn’t really work and comes off as a little disjointed but kudos to Adrenechrome for trying something new! The highlight of the album is “The Heart And The Feather” with both Friesen and Kehoe excelling themselves with some delightful Celtic-inspired dual guitar harmonies that wouldn’t have sounded amiss on an old Thin Lizzy song.
One notable criticism is that Adrenechrome appear compelled to throw everything but the kitchen sink into most of their songs! As a result, the music comes across as confused and some of their disparate styles feel unnaturally forced together. On the plus side, there are a number of strong tracks on this album and the Tales from the Crypt/Creepshow inspired artwork is stunning.
Frustrating and intriguing in equal measure. 6/10