KTG Records [Release Date 04.09.20]
Kiss The Gun’s 2017 debut, “Nightmares” readily labelled them as ‘one to watch’.
Much of the credit went to charismatic Georgian vocalist, Nadin Zakharian. She’s gone now, and has been replaced by Brit, Abigail Austin. The rest of the band remains intact, providing a solid sounding board for Austin’s fresh faced individuality. No question, she accepts the challenge of the new head on. And while the band sprinkle rollicking rock songs ‘Flight Of The Phoenix’, ‘Emergency’ and ‘Almost Undone’, with the toughened up AOR shapes that define the genre, Austin leans back into the melodies, letting the wordy, weighty lyrics do their work, making us suspect she’s actually holding something in reserve for when it’s really needed.
“We See You” doesn’t lack for ambition. In fact on almost every track here, they’ve created something new and different. The faux symphonic rock of ‘Dreamer’, sweeps in on neo-romantic strings, setting the scene for a chugging riff and a thumping heartbeat of a hook. And there’s the anti war ‘What We’ve Become’, using thrillingly abrasive guitar wails to build a psychological, anti-war soundscape.
But maybe the more simply textured ‘Break The Chains’ does it best, using traditional Arabic melodic motifs, then cutting them with rock’n'roll guitars and western rhythms. The medium is the message.
If the debut promised that one day KTG would create a very distinctive piece of work, (and you would have thought the loss of their vocalist, who seemed an integral part of their future as much as their present, would have been a major setback, but wasn’t), then “We See You” takes a huge stride toward that aspiration. ****
Review by Brian McGowan
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