High Energy Rock and Roll Lives On With the New York Vaults

Sometimes I want to listen to some deep, complex, progressive rock that will make me think, challenge my norms or help me reach nirvana. Other times I just want to rock out and listen to some high energy, good time rock and roll that will get your blood moving. I've talked about this before, and I'm sure it's true of most people. If you're currently looking for some new music to make you get up and rock out, I have a band for you.

I came across the New York Vaults online via an indie rock site I believe. It's a little hard to recall because it was a while back, but I bookmarked their myspace page and thought I'd get back to it within a few days. Well, things got a little jumbled in my list of bands to listen to, that is growing everyday and it took a little longer for me to check them out in a little more depth than I wish it had, because this band is keeping high energy rock and roll and proto punk alive with some great songs.

You music aficionados probably think I've mistyped here. The New York Vaults? Surely he's actually referring to the New York Dolls, who are in fact not new (although they did release a new album this year), but no, I have the name right. This is a band out of upstate New York, that sounds straight out of the 70s, but formed a lot closer to now. Their name is a fitting tribute to the afore mentioned New York Dolls though, because to my ear they sound a lot like them. Band comparisons are always fraught with problems, but for this group I actually think it's pretty accurate to describe the music I've heard so far with the following equation: New York Dolls + Rolling Stones + Sex Pistols = New York Vaults.

Not a bad combination at all and the band doesn't sound like rehash either, which is always a good thing. They sound very comfortably within their sound and play it well adding their own color and style as if they'd be playing this kind of rock even if those other bands never existed. At the same time though, their influences come through all over the place, but colored with their own style, like they're paying homage to their heroes.

Unfortunately, I've only been able to heard 4 songs so far, but those songs sound great and I'm looking forward to hearing more, or catching them live because I bet they put on a killer show.

The first song I listened to was "Stoned Faces" and I'm really digging this track. It's got a good riff and stomping beat with the addition of piano pounding away for some color and depth. There's even a soaring saxophone lead to up the energy. With a catchy beat and chorus... I really like those backing vocals... it's just great rock and roll, definitely recalling both the New York Dolls and the Stones. "Three Song Queen" keeps the trend going with an open riff and drum parts that seem like a good tribute to the Sex Pistols as it reminded me of tracks like "Pretty Vacant" and "Bodies" by that band. The riff and chorus of this song is a kick in the teeth as well keeping the energy up with killer riffs and some perfect screeching lead licks that follow the lyrical melody at some points and break off out on their own in others. "Get Back" is also a good riff driven track, with a searing guitar lead and a show stopping chorus complete with more harmonized backing vocals that really work well and add some soul. "Detroit Muscle" stands out a little from the other three in that it shows off their hard punk influences as they kick it into rock and roll overdrive, and I do mean overdrive. The band pushes into another gear and sound like they're just gonna tear the whole place down on this track. The few breaks up the intensity and let it build, before launching into it again. This is a great rocker without a doubt.

You might be thinking from my descriptions that perhaps I could have classified this band more appropriately just under the proto punk moniker, and although that would be pretty accurate as songs like "Detroit Muscle" attest to, I don't really feel it does this band justice. All these songs certainly have plenty of punk energy and the necessary, quasi raunchy, rock lyrics with the appropriate drug references, but there's more to them than that. Check out the back vocals and overall structure of "Stoned Faces" or "Get back". Both sound like they're channeling a lot of the Rolling Stones to me, but also a bit of soul, British R & B, and early rock and rollers like Little Richard and Jerry Lee Lewis.

Whether you hear all that in their music or not, I think you'll like their brand of energetic, fun rock and roll. If you're looking for some artsy experimental rock then you might want to look elsewhere, but I'm really digging these songs as they're catchy and their energy is infectious... definitely music to make you get up and move.

Like I said, I haven't heard the entire album yet, but I'm looking forward to it and will be keeping an eye on this band in the future to see what else they can bring to the table.

Obviously people into the early punk scene like me, especially the New York Dolls, will probably like this band. I can see Stones fans liking them too, and if you need a more modern comparison, if you're into band's like Jet, than check them out as well. I think I actually prefer these guys to Jet and don't think it's too close a comparison, but it'll give you an idea.

So there you go... the New York Vaults. Keeping high energy rock and roll and paying tribute to the Dolls, the Pistols, the Stones and so many others while still being themselves and definitely rockin' hard.

The band does not have their own site as far as I know, but you can listen to the 4 tracks I've mentioned here on their myspace page: http://www.myspace.com/nyvaults

You can all pick up their whole album through Cdbaby, and listen the same tracks here: http://cdbaby.com/cd/newyorkvaults

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