[Release date 16.10.15]
The Cringe. Perhaps not the best name for a group I’ve ever heard. But it’s given the New York City based band four previous releases. Tried and test mainstream rock, the band features John Cusimano on vocals and guitar a lawyer by day, and a rock star at night.
Well ‘star’ might be overdoing it, but along with a James Rotondi (lead guitar), Jonny Blaze (bass) and Shawn Pelton (drums) The Cringe make a very acceptable noise. One that’s seen them invited to open for luminaries such as Motley Crue, Alice Cooper, Steel Panther, Cheap Trick, The New York Dolls and Alter Bridge.
Not so ‘visual’ as some of those headliners, The Cringe nevertheless pack a sizeable punch in the all-important song writing department with Blind Spot providing the perfect driving music - dynamic pop /rock packed with big hooks, and vibrant playing. It’s an aspect of the band’s sound that has been deliberately tightened for this release by bringing in Don Gilmore (Linkin Park, Pearl Jam, Good Charlotte, Korn and more) to produce.
The aim was to make a cohesive radio friendly rock record where ‘every track makes sense, and each one sounds like a smaller part of a larger piece of work’. In that sense it’s a case of ‘mission accomplished’. The only problem is, that’s not a very ‘trending’ sound at present. But for those with a soft spot for that late 1970s/early 1980s genre, Blind Spot is an unexpected delight. ****
Review by Pete Whalley
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