I’ve had “Cursed And Corrected” for a while now, and if ever anything showed how time catches up with things, it’s the press release.
On the very day I am writing this, Twister should have been playing a socially distanced gig to celebrate the album being out. You can only feel sorry for bands who are desperate to play their new stuff to people who are desperate to listen.
Strangely, though, there’s a kind of hope in the songs here. A kind of glimmer that suggests brighter days.
It’s in the freshness of the sound. I’d read the stuff about Twister. New breed of classic rock and all that. And ok, yeah, maybe there’s a touch of that, but it’d be unfair on the band not to recognise that this is not a rehash. This is not “classic” anything. This is a band with a fresh outlook. A band that cannot wait to get going.
When I saw the picture of the guys, the frontman, Stevie Stoker was immediately familiar. He was the singer in DeeVer, the band that Billy Taylor formed after Inglorious. The vibe is similar, as it happens. Rock meets pop meets indie for an assault on the top 40 (if anyone really cares?)
There’s something mature about them too. “Save Us Yourself”, wouldn’t be out of place on an FM record, in fairness, it soars in a way you might not expect, and the guitar line of Stoker and Jake Grimes gets in and doesn’t leave.
“Young And Affected”, arguably, is the band at their best. A real urgency, energy. A crunch that says “early Stereophonics” and that is a name I kept thinking of throughout this in fairness.
There’s a breathless kind of wonder about “Natural Survivor” driven on by its percussion and, make no mistake about this, Twister no how to write a chorus. This is full of them. Not least on the title track. Which has a 90s feel. Bands like Three Colours Red had the same melody and fire back in the day.
But the thing about Twister, it seems to me, anyway, is that rather – and proudly too – it wants to defy expectations. “Wild And Lonely (Fingers Crossed)” is pop rock with a heavy accent on the “pop”, an electro pulse and a mindset that is far bigger than the pub they were supposed to be playing that album launch gig in.
“Trading Hearts” gets bonus points for starting with a guitar solo, while the first single they put out from the record, “Call To Arms” is just that. When Stoker sings “what are you waiting for!?” it feels like his frustration at the last five years (that’s how long this album has been planned) is pouring out.
They have a gift for changing tone, too. “Mystery” is quiet and gentle in a way you didn’t imagine, likewise “Feeding Frenzy” which follows, has an indie thing. That backing vocal line is not classic rock, that’s for sure. Neither is “Monroe”. But they do have a common thread. They are confident, classy, and unrepentant.
“Fist Fight By The Waterside” is a little rawer and therefore just a little closer to my taste. This is the work of a band that wants to grab any opportunities that come their way, as is the stomping “64 White Lies”, which ends the album as stridently as it has been throughout.
It’ll be interesting to see where Twister end up, because I am going to guess that won’t be as the band they are now. However they evolve, though, on the evidence of “Cursed And Corrected” it’ll always be interesting.