Damn 13 - Black Heart Northern Soul - Distort Entertainment
11 Songs
Running Time: Too Fuckin' Long

I'll make this short and to the point, much like Damn 13 do with their debut release, and save us all some time. Black Heart Northern Soul is a failure on every front. Begun in 1998 by former Monster Voodoo Machine (I know, 'nuff said, right?) vocalist Adam Sewell, Toronto's Damn 13 might have done well to just call this album We Really Like COC And The Hellacopters...Like...Alot. Still, flattery only works when it's flattering, and in this case Damn 13 couldn't hit the broad side of a good, memorable song if they tried.

'Destroy A-Go-Go' (remember Nike A-Go-Go by The Misfits, anyone?) has all the drive and energy of the band who plays your local bar from Wednesday through Friday nights, and makes you only show up on Saturdays. Ever since COC started off on their biker-rock kick back in 1994, it seems they haven't been able to whip out their dicks to take a piss without bands musically sucking them off to varying degrees of success. 'Broken Wings' wants to rock badly, but just can't seem to get off the ground, and the lyrics of 'Rocket Fuel' were most likely lifted from the bathroom wall of Toronto's Sneaky D's during a late night Labatt bender. Regardless if it's party rock or not, put some thought into the lyrics, please. Fuck, Clutch has been doing it for damn near fifteen years and show no signs of slowing. Most of the songs on Black Heart Northern Soul follow the same lyrical pattern, in fact. It goes something like "Mention Jesus, booze, the Devil, and bonus points if we can work a model of car or the word "broken" into the song somehow.". Damn 13 claims to have "driven at least one nail into the nu metal coffin". Well, that's all well and good, but we can't just ignore that Sewell helped foist that very sound onto the public in MVM. Call it what you will, but Black Heart Northern Soul smacks of a Spinal Tap-ish mockery, and it doesn't taste good going down. 'High Friends In Low Places' is standard at best, Sewell's faux-redneck accent becoming less laughable and more genuinely irritating by this point, and the time spent listening to 'Shine' in a live setting would surely be better spent waiting in line for the bathroom. Closing the album is 'Anywhere But Here', in which the boys strap on acoustics and proceed to bore the living shit out of you for around eight minutes, all the while calling the song "epic". The sinking of the Titanic was "epic" as well, don't forget. I promised brevity here, though, so here's a short mathematical formula to help you out. Black Heart + Northern Soul = Wasted Time. My invoice for time spent on this beer coaster of a disc is in the mail.


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