Susan M. Stone - Freelance Artist
The dead ARE Dancing!
As I sit here - thinking too much - listening to a storm, I\'m thinking about the best way to approach this review. Sadly there are a lot of people that will probably never get a chance to hear a tight CD like \"La Danza Macabra\" by a truly great band - THE KILLING FLOOR. This isn’t the first album from the San Antonio locals, and it’s sure to evolve into several incarnations in the future.
I spend so much time playing and listening to music that I just feel it, and I never really take the time to define the reasons. This is one of those CD’s that move the body and soul. However, writing about what you\'re hearing, instead of just feeling it, requires your full attention; it moves deeper than what you hear, and how it makes you feel. So, with my full attention (and my heart), I\'m just going to present my thoughts as I hear them.
THE KILLING FLOOR is: JCM - Guitars & Vocals, Jack Trevino - Drums &
Percussion, Miggs - Bass Guitar, Larry Rimes - Percussion, and Darren Stansbury -
\"La Danza Macabra\" consists of ten well-written, rhythmically pounding,
and guitar blazing songs. This CD is living proof that rock and roll
is still alive, screaming, and blazing out of Texas. Sitting in with a strong
rhythm section, JCM wails with some powerful guitar riffs and emotional
vocals sure enough to make you believe in channeling. One can only imagine the energy and magic from hearing a live gig. As the CD plays, allow me to elaborate on a few tracks.
About ten seconds into \"LIVE\", the strong guitar charge, along with tempo changes,
makes it perfectly clear why this was a perfect opening track. It slips into a melodic caress towards the middle, and then weaves into a slow fade. The strong vocals and ripping guitar work build in frenzy with pounding percussion. It’s all very intricate if you listen closely.
The great rhythms and guitar riffs continue through \"WHAT I DREAM TO DO\". It\'s
a straight-forward rock and roll, guitar slinging song with the whole band in a
very impressive groove moving from behind. This song defines their
unique sound most profoundly.
\"DAY BY DAY\" slows things down a bit with some clean guitar lines, strong lyrics,
and hypnotic rhythms. This is the kind of song that can only come from a heart
in complete communion with the instrument. In a time of speed licks, and
tricked out guitars, this song bleeds from a real place.
One of personal favorites \"MARY JAYNE\" grinds out right from the beginning, and
pulls you down for the count, moving into a brilliant psychedelic guitar movement
with scorching rhythms which binge, and crash back in perfect stride.
\"IT\'S NOT ME\" creeps in slowly with a beautiful and haunting piano intro with
classic guitar softly singing. It then shakes back into a comfortable groove. It\'s
a lamenting piece to be sure with lyrics like \"forgive my sins and have them all washed
away\". It winds down with a dark and lovely dirge waiting for delivery while searching for answers. Okay, this might be my favorite!
\"HOLE IN MY HEART\" reminds me of Stevie Ray - screaming guitar solos and driving rhythm, but it\'s JCM\'s ride.
There are some sweet guitar riffs in \"STREETS\". It\'s sweet for the soul indeed. With the
lyrics: \"If I needed a friend, would you be a friend\", this song pleads to the world in the
universal language of music.
\"DEVIL\'S ALLEY\" is a damn fine rockabilly instrumental. I love it! It still has a psychedelic haze in it, but then it rolls back into rockabilly runs and rhythms. It\'s a great piece.
This sweet disc comes to a close with \"MANIC DEPRESSION\". What can I say? It\'s Jimi\'s song, but it\'s done with a Texas flavor that made me smile. It\'s a perfect cosmic twist for the end of this CD.
If you like Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimmy Vaughan, or Jimi Hendrix mixed with a dash of Santana, and some San Antonio \'moxie\', this is the CD for you. Do yourself a favor, and slip into the JCM experience on “La Danza Macabra”.
The Killing Floor is \'on fire\', and the dead ARE dancing!