The dream of writing and playing your own music, releasing albums and rocking out on stage, is a dream that many people have held onto for years, but for members of the Sudbury based Canadian band, Blackwood Sinners (formerly known as Set In Stone), they were able to take their dream and turn it into a reality. After countless hours of writing and playing, the band has started work on their debut album, Against The Grain, which is expected to be released early in 2016. Earlier in December 2015, the band released the debut single, “Reno,” which has sparked some intrigue on the upcoming album. Along with “Reno,” the band has allowed RMR to listen to early demos and review two other songs that will be featured on the album, “St. Christopher” and “Undone.” Blackwood Sinners have a very classic rock sound and lead vocalist, Boyd, has a very melodic voice with just a slight rasp that brings a certain fullness to the music.
The debut single “Reno,” is about someone who has done all that they needed to do, and now they just want to go out into the world and find adventure in places that they have never been. The song begins with an upbeat drum beat, which then leads into the rock guitars and the opening lyrics of, “Oh I’m tired of paying all these bills / The way I’m wired, I seek to feed those thrills / I’m running I’m running I’m running away until I’m too far gone / I’m taking I’m taking I’m taking a chance and hoping I’m not wrong.” These lyrics from the first verse say that he has thought about getting away for sometime, and that his everyday life just isn’t what he is looking to do anymore but he would rather take a huge chance and jump into something different. The chorus is where he talks about being far from home and never having experienced a sunset in Reno, thus meaning there are many things that he hasn’t done, even though he knows he probably will have to do it on his own. In the second verse it says, “Oh I’m tired. I’ve payed all my dues / It sparks a fire, this one I won’t lose / I’m running I’m running I’m running I’m running towards a dream that’s in my head / If I stay static I might end up being small town dead.” Again we see that he is getting tired of just living his everyday life, and all he wants to do is find his dream and not be stuck where he doesn’t want to be. This song really touches upon a topic that many feel very connected to, as most people just want to be living their dreams and not be stuck in a life they don’t enjoy.
“St. Christopher,” begins with a slow intro by gentle guitars and drum beats that later increases into a stronger rock sound. The song begins by talking about someone who is a heretic, provocateur, and who makes many proclamations, thus leaving everyone to call them the voice of reason, sanity, and someone with their own opinions and giving inspiration. Leading into the chorus are the lyrics of, “I will not entertain false hope in lies designed to enslave / Exposing those who would call you spiritual dissident,” which means that they wont stand by while others are making false claims about the one they seem to look to. The chorus follows with them praying for St. Christopher to come to them and help. The second verse once again shows how with provocation causes lines to be drawn and brings the temptation of comfort, while there is small faith in those who would follow someone leading them to desolation, “Provocation / There are lines drawn in the sand / The cruel / Temptation of comfort / There is precious little faith for a world who would follow / Like a lamb being herded along to the slaughter / With a smile.” This song has a very different pace to it than the other two singles, and keeps the era of mystery around the subject, with the carefully chosen chords and notes.
The third song, “Undone,” once again beings with a slower intro that builds into heavier rock guitars, bass and drums. The song is about someone who is terrorized by their own demons, that allow them to believe that they are a problem and force them to feel isolated and drained. The first verse consists of, “City lights dance in the rain like a sea of regret / They form a line but they won’t fall in place, consumed by disdain / You are a problem child, you didn’t realize / Couldn’t handle the weight / You are a problem child, the thought controls your mind / Couldn’t carry the weight.” The pre-chorus and the chorus, talk about taking the loaded gun away before the person pulls the trigger, even though they are the only one who knows what they feel and how they want to continue. In the second verse, they discuss how the person is chastised among the large group that is oppressed from stepping away from what society deems as normal, and how they wish that they could conform to what everyone else seems to be, but they just aren’t able to, “Chastised among the masses for stepping from the norm / Beg and plead wanting to conform but the sickness won’t let go.” As the verse continues we see what the demons are making the person believe how they aren’t the chosen one, or that they won’t ever amount to anything but they have a whole lot coming towards them. Even though at the end of the day they know that they are not the only one feeling like this and that they could make their own path, “You’re not the chosen one, you’re not the setting sun / You’ve got it coming in spades / When all is said and done, you’re not the only one / Who couldn’t carry the weight.” As the last chorus ends, the lyrics of “You’ve come undone,” leave the last impression that the person wasn’t able to handle the weight of their own mind, and thus ending up coming undone.
As new bands emerge everyday into the harsh world of music, some will push through everything that comes their way and be able to create music that really connects with their audience, and bring a sound that they worked hard for. Blackwood Sinners have presented the world with an impressive first look at what is to come in their upcoming debut album expected in 2016, and will continue to play out their dream.
Reno – Official Audio & Video
Alyssa (Rolling Music Reviews)