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Santa Cruz - 'Santa Cruz'

posted 1 Mar 2015, 08:07 by Paul Woodward

(Spinefarm Records)

Review by Woody

The second album from Finnish sleaze rockers Santa Cruz is actually self titled, which may be a little confusing for people new to the band as self titled albums tend to be debuts. I very much enjoyed the band’s debut outing ‘Screaming for Adrenaline’ and I saw lots of promise in their sleazy rock n roll. This album sees them push their song writing forward into more commercial territory, it’s less raw and they have a more polished and a louder distinctive melodic edge.

Don’t get me wrong this is still full on sleaze with crunching guitars oozing rebellion and spitting attitude, but it’s far slicker and smoother. They have cranked up the harmonies and smooth melodies and some of these tracks scream radio hit gold. I found this album as a whole more instant and enjoyable than its predecessor, tracks like ‘We Are The Ones To Fall’ and ‘Wasted and Wounded’ quickly became hits with me and have received lots of repeat plays on my stereo.

It’s an album full of adrenaline fuelled rockers, lots of exciting energy and a rebellious spirit that will have fists pumping. The harmony drenched melody heavy choruses are sure to make them a hit, there’s a strong anthemic feel to them and I’m sure they’ll get feet stomping and voices singing along in union. The vast majority of these songs have the potential to be killer live!

‘Bonafide Heroes’ and ‘Velvet Rope’ are rabble rousing pounding sleaze anthems, with sing-along choruses and soaring harmony vocals that open the album with an enticing bang! ‘My Remedy’ has a quirky slant to it but it is really infectious and continues the album long theme of rabble rousing choruses. The Ballad – ‘Can You Feel The Rain’ is the closing track and I think this was a wise move as it allows the contagious energy of the rest album to keep momentum. So this one slows things down but it doesn’t see a dip in quality, in fact it is one of my stand out tracks it has a delicate and beautiful melody and I find it very emotive and touching. It builds to an anthemic power ballad type chorus and I’m sure even the most hardcore sleaze fans will be won over by the bands softer side.

It’s a cracking album which is well worth cranking up and raising your voice to. If sleaze is your thing, trust me you want to get on this ASAP!

Track Listing: Bonafide Heroes / Velvet Rope / My Remedy / 6(66) Feet Under / Bye Bye Babylon / We Are The Ones To Fall / Wasted and Wounded / Let Them Burn / Vagabonds / Can You Feel The Rain

Woody’s Essential Track: Wasted and Wounded