In the space of just two years, Melbourne based band Shotgun Mistress has achieved quite a bit to bolster their position as one of Australia’s leading exponents of contemporary heavy rock. And a year of chart and radio play gains proves this—Save Me From Myself (#1 iTunes Rock Charts), Glorious Machine (#1 iTunes Rock Charts) and Collide (#4 iTunes Rock Charts).
The band has now released their new track, Bleed Me Out, hoping to repeat the impact of previous singles. I don’t see why not. The song is another preview of the band’s forthcoming debut album due out soon and upholds and retains many of the tropes of an apparently invincible rock tradition.
Bleed Me Out yet again displays the band’s idiomatic selling points, a substantial reserve of dynamism, songwriting craft and battering ram power. The visual imagery of the lyric pointedly corresponds with the unceasing rhythm section and the chugging death grip of the guitars—clear feats of skilful performed by the band’s world-renowned guitarist Matt Wilcock (voted top 100 metal guitarists of all time).
An emblematic guitar riff kicks off proceedings, one vaguely reminiscent of The Kinks’ evergreen You Really Got Me, which then leads into the band’s accented accompaniment. The verse vocal sits at a relatively low register, adding a suitable dollop of menace to proceedings, which reaches a layered, robust apex with the unleashed melodically tinged chorus. And once more, Shotgun Mistress’ lyrics confront the broad, hefty undergrowth of emotional upheavals and mercurial relationships—in Bleed Me Out all seem to point to the area of addiction, as this line reveals, Best dressed for a relapse, back in line/tick-tock cause you’re running out of time.
The production here is as well-crafted as their previous tracks, with the distorted guitars governing yet not clouding the mix and certainly not jousting too vehemently with the lead vocal, an undertaking that’s usually fraught with peril.
As Bleed Me Out reaffirms, the subgenre of heavy, hard, alternative metal—whatever you want to call it—is alive and doing very well indeed.