Brit-pop meets metal and it's a fun ride
When Lennon, McCartney, Harrison and Starr were taking the world by storm, it's a fair bet that they never ever thought that their songs would be put through the metallic parody ringer several decades later. But they have thanks to Beatallica - who are vocalist/guitarist Jaymz Lennfield, guitarist Grg Hammetson, bassist Kliff McBurtney and drummer Ringo Larz - who started out as a joke act that soon garnered ridiculous amounts of support and attention as an underground act. Soon enough, their appeal and popularity couldn't be denied and they have returned with their official debut album, thematically dubbed Sgt. Hetfield's Motorbreath Pub Band.
There's a lot of fun to be had with a release like this. Purists might see it as blasphemous no matter which side of the fence you sit on. To hell with that as this is one hell of a fun ride. The title track, Sgt. Hetfield's Motorbreath Pub Band and it's reprise towards the album's end (with both titles needing little explanation), shows ?'s vocals with a solid take on Hetfield's distinctive sneer and is more Beatles than Metallica, but the slightly punked meets metal like Revol-ooh-tion is more of a true cross between the two musical acts. The first real track to deliver a well known Metallica riff is the brilliantly titled and arranged Blackened In The U.S.S.R which segues effortlessly into the unambiguous Sandman, which is slightly more Metallica than Beatles. I didn't think Helvester of Skelter was going to work given how different the two tracks are, but sure enough these guys have managed to pull this one off, too.
It's quite possible that A Garage Dayz Nite is the pinnacle of the album as far as giving the unsuspecting a good starting point for Beatallica - it's right on the money for both acts and just rocks out from start to finish. It's unbelievable to see what these guys did to create Anethesia (I'm Only Sleeping) which can really only be heard to be believed. Let's just say I'll never look at Anesthesia (Pulling Teeth) and Today Is Your Birthday the same ever again. Leper Madonna is more Beatles than Metallica, whilst Ktulu (He's So Heavy) is a long way removed from the brilliance that is The Call Of Ktulu but at least this is an interesting interpretation of things and For Horsemen really doesn't deliver compared to the other blends on offer here. Hey Dude, for all of it's slow pace, is now a fully fledged guitarists' anthem, and ...And Justice For All My Loving is a blistering way to wrap it all up.
Some will love it, some will hate it. But Beatallica are having fun with paying homage to two of music's most influential acts. Sgt. Hetfield's Motorbreath Pub Band swings shamelessly between the two musical extremes of The Beatles and Metallica both effortlessly and perfectly with elements of both acts always being identifiable. It's easy to see why the profile of these guys skyrocketed like it did. This is good stuff!
(Oglio Records/Shogun Distribution)