Velvetcut - _Thirteen_
(Firebox Records, 2006)
by: Pedro Azevedo (5 out of 10)
Describing themselves as a band who mixes "heavy American rock" and Finnish melancholy to produce "deep, atmospheric rock", Velvetcut certainly sound like an odd fit for the usually doomy Firebox Records from the start of their debut full-length _Thirteen_. While Katatonia have a way of taking a number of musical elements that should have sounded mainstream and somehow come out with excellent, norm-defying albums, that is not the case with Velvetcut. _Thirteen_ suffers from a number of passages that seem far too radio-friendly, with the vocals generally adding a further layer of mainstream humdrum. This isn't to say the vocals, or indeed the songs in general, are bad. Velvetcut have a reasonable mix of softer and harder elements in the music, but they just seem prone to creating passages (and even entire songs, like "The Chase" and "Go Away") that bring to mind trite radio music rather than present something interesting. Even the heavier bits, which are clearly faithful to their reference to American rock, have a similar effect. Some of the riffs and vocal lines are good, others are entirely forgettable; overall _Thirteen_ is a decent album, but fails to impress and differentiate itself from so much that's already clogging up the airwaves.


(article published 18/5/2006)

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