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When Skies Wash Ashore

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Album Review

Although Knoxville's Straight Line Stitch could trace their origins back through various configurations to about 1999, it's easy to tell why the group thinks of itself as having been formed in a real sense when Alexis Brown arrived as lead singer. On When Skies Wash Ashore, the band's national debut, inaugurating the Raging Nation Records imprint through KOCH, Brown makes an immediate impression by alternating two voices, a "normal," if impassioned, singing voice and the kind of ungodly howl typical of heavy metal groups. She isn't the only heavy metal vocalist to veer back and forth between screaming and singing, of course, but, in part because she's a woman in a genre dominated by men and in part because of the distinctiveness of her singing voice, the dichotomy is particularly striking. It's like an aural version of Dr. Jekyll and Ms. Hyde, as if the vocalist is switching back and forth schizophrenically and uncontrollably from human to monster. The band's instrumentalists — guitarists Seth Thacker and Pat Pattison, bassist Jason White, and drummer Patrick Haynes — support that vocal battle royal with music that similarly alternates between pummeling metal and melodic hard rock. But it's Brown who really catches the ear. And on the concluding track, "Yesterday's Gone," which she sings accompanied only by an acoustic guitar, she demonstrates that she can still get her feelings across in a quieter context.

Biography

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s

Knoxville, TN, heavy metal band Straight Line Stitch were first organized at the turn of the century and self-released a demo EP and an album in the early 2000s. But the band prefers to think of its real birth as having occurred with the addition of singer Alexis Brown in 2003. Brown made her recording debut on Straight Line Stitch's second self-released album, To Be Godlike, in 2006, after which the lineup behind her solidified in the form of guitarists Pat Pattison and Seth Thacker, bassist Jason...
Full bio
When Skies Wash Ashore, Straight Line Stitch
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  • 6,99 €
  • Genres: Rock, Music, Metal
  • Released: 19 August 2008

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