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Alestorm – Curse of The Crystal Coconut – 2nd Opinion Review

Released by: Napalm Records

Genre: Pirate metal

Release date: 29 May 2020

 

Line up:

Christopher Bowes – Vocals & Keytar
Máté Bodor – Guitar
Gareth Murdock – Bass
Elliot Vernon – Keyboards
Peter Alcorn – Drums

 

Tracklist:

  1. Treasure Chest Party Quest
    2. Fannybaws
    3. Chomp Chomp
    4. Tortuga
    5. Zombies Ate My Pirate Ship
    6. Call of the Waves
    7. Pirate’s Scorn
    8. Shit Boat (No Fans)
    9. Pirate Metal Drinking Crew
    10. Wooden Leg Part 2. (The Woodening)
    11. Henry Martin

 

OK let’s get one thing straight, if you are looking for a new direction from Alestorm in this album you are going to be very very disappointed and you should walk away now. If, however, you are hoping for an album full of Alestorm’s signature pirate metal, jigging round the garden with a rum in hand suitable songs, then you are in the correct place.

It’s not often a promo comes with a lyric sheet, but this one did, and whilst waiting for the MP3’s to download I decided to give these a read first, and I am glad I did. There is plenty of fun to be had in trying to sing along to a song you have yet to hear, with the exception of the (at time of writing) three singles that have already been released from the album.

The album opens with the lines ‘500 years ago when I was born, I crawled from the womb with a drinking horn, I held it to the sky in my tiny metal hand, And got real drunk before I could stand’ and that is where this Treasure Chest Party Quest of an album sets its tone, as Alestorm makes it very clear they are ‘only here to have fun, get drunk, and make loads of money’. With live music currently on hold and all 2020 festivals cancelled the ‘make loads of money’ part may be a bit of a challenge. But the ‘have fun, get drunk’ part, we can totally still do.

FannyBaws follows the opening track, continuing the outrageous party theme, I mean ‘He went to battle naked, wearing just a tiger’s pelt’… and the worrying thing is there will be people at festivals next year wearing ‘just a tiger’s pelt’ for Alestorm sets (although some people do not need this as reason). Chomp Chomp continues the party feeling.

Tortuga, for me is possibly the weakest song on the album, and I can’t quite put my finger on why. It’s not the rap from Captain Yarrface (although it’s not great, John Barnes is better at rapping in my opinion), it just sounds a bit, well bitty, as a song it doesn’t seem to flow. I am a bit ‘meh’ about it. [Make your own mind up, the video is below:]

 

Luckily, the next song on the album makes up for the previous one, a 5 minute musically adept epic about, well, Zombies eating their pirate ship. The guest vocals from Patty Gurdy fit perfectly into the middle of this song, which you can easily imagine a group of pirates, in an Inn, Ale in hand, singing side by side, swaying along, quite seriously until you listen to the lyrics and realise that they are indeed still having fun.

The tempo picks up with Call of The Waves, this is a proper power metal track, with some very nice symphonic breaks thrown in, a great song before the next two surprises come along.

Now, having not seen the Donkey Kong Television show, I did have to research the original version of Pirate’s Scorn, and let’s just say this is one of those covers that are better than the original. Clearer lyrics, better music, but still keeping the same fun atmosphere from the original children’s TV show. With this and You’re a Silly Sausage, Alestorm are well on their way to a Childrens album. Shit Boat (No Fans) is not for the kids however, at a minute 15 long, it is a quick blast of a fight song, with hilarious lyrics, this was one that I was giggling at whilst waiting for the MP3s to download.

Pirate Metal Drinking Crew, is well Alestorm doing Alestorm, a song about pirates, metal, drinking and being a crew, against the world, with plenty of profanities to drunkenly shout along with.

A follow up to Wooden Leg (Sunset On The Golden Age) Wooden Leg Part 2. is 8 minutes of epic sillyness, starting with what could almost pass as the Star Wars opening film theme, before crashing into what is possibly my favourite song on the album. The song tells a story of wooden limbs, in a way Alestorm only can.

The Album would have been perfect ended here, but it feels like somebody looked at the track times and thought ‘oh, we have a couple of minutes spare. What can we add?’

That addition is Henry Martin, a Scottish folk song, which does seem a bit out of place at the end of this album, it’s a bit of an anticlimactic finish.

However, despite the way this album ends, I shall be playing this album very loudly this summer, with a drink in hand and dancing round the garden like a loon, trying to forget that all my summer festivals have been cancelled, as it is ultimately an album of Alestorm doing what they do best, Pirate metal party songs, and for that I shall have a rum for them.

With all of the music needed to get us through lockdown and the effects of COVID-19, Alestorm are just the ticket to put some zest back in your life. With no live shows forthcoming, the band have instead released a live video filmed in Tilburg last year , you can see the full gig below:

 

SCORE: 9 /10

Reviewed by Kalli Isborne

 

 

 

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