You often hear of new female voices in the blues genre compared to Janis Joplin, and usually that's not fair to the greatness of Joplin, or to the new voice. However, when the first strains of The Pack's lead cut to Tintype began to play, I immediately thought Wow! This gal has Joplin soul.
Becky Black is the lead singer, and guitarist for this two-piece band, and this is clearly her show (Maya Miller is the drummer). She is The Pack. This band out of B.C., will live and die based on Black, and while that might add some pressure, she should not fear, cause she has the voice to carry any band.
Musically, this is definitely blues. In fact it's pretty killer in terms of the blues beat. Yet, and to the credit of The Pack, they put a modern rock twist into enough songs to add to the overall flavour. Songs like This Terror and Stray are crossover cuts that fit into both worlds nicely. Ditto a moody cut like Bang.
This CD is a moody one, kind of heavy, dark, and simply delicious. Black's voice has that sort of nasty growl that so well fits a darkly moodish effort, and it all comes together well here.
Even the lyrics are enticing, once you get to the point where you are digesting the words instead of simply enjoying Black's voice which is the overriding power here throughout. To The Pack's credit they wrote every cut here as well, which bodes well for the direction their careers are likely to take.
Listeners are going to fall in love with Black, and will count themselves lucky that The Pack is offering up 17 songs, on this their debut release.
This one is really worth seeking out. Check them out at www.thepackafterdeath.com
-- CALVIN DANIELS
-- Review first appeared in Yorkton This Week newspaper May 14, 2008 - Yorkton, SK. Canada