Album Review: Biters – “The Future Ain’t What It Used To Be”
Biters’ debut album, 2015’s Electric Blood sounded like the work of a group of very confused young men. Seemingly unsure whether they should be trying to sound like Kiss or The Dead Boys, they ended up kind of stuck in the musical equivalent of no man’s land between the two, with an album which was too lightweight to be punk and too dull to be glam. Add to that a terrible flat production and it’s safe to say it wasn’t the most auspicious start that they could have made.
Two years on and it appears that on this sophomore effort, there’s been a bit of a rethink. Any notion of Biters being a punk band has been quietly brushed to one side and The Future Ain’t What It Used To Be is pretty much a full-on “party like it’s 1973” glam rock album. And to tell the truth, it’s a smart move on their part – they sound a lot more comfortable and focused than they did two years ago, and this is a much better effort for it.
The touchstones here are probably what you’d expect; from the Devil Gate Drive stomp of Gypsy Rose (no, not that one) and current single Stone Cold Love, through the Slade style gang chants of Let It Roll and the Bolan style strut of Callin’ You Home, but Biters attack it with such enthusiasm that the lack of originality is easily forgiven this time out. There’s even a sly nod to ’80s glam as well in the form of the two power ballads on the second side, the November Rain style piano epic Hollywood and the lonesome cowboy acoustic-based Goin’ Back To Georgia.
They’re only let down slightly by the slightly muddy production on a couple of tracks and the lack of a genuinely killer tune to crown this one off, but overall, this isn’t a bad effort at all.
A big step in the right direction for Biters after their underwhelming debut. This is the sound of a much more confident band who've now identified what they want their sound to be, and the quality of the material has definitely improved accordingly. There's still a few inconsistencies to be ironed out but yup, it's official - Biters have made a decent album. Now there's a sentence I didn't think I'd find myself saying two years ago...