Review: Small Jackets – IV

“IV” Out Now

By Alle Royale

Here in Italy, after a good pizza, we usually play some mandolin on a terrace, waving our golden necklaces to the rhythm of a tarantella; so, when Small Jackets rose to notoriety in 2004 with their debut, ‘Play At High Level’, and their classic brand of high energy rock ‘n’ roll in debt with the likes of Humble Pie, AC/DC, Status Quo and Deep Purple, we all raised our eyebrows in a state of shock. Anyway, after the first moments of anxiety and confusion, we were pretty much keen to accept the fact that also in Italyyou can play some good, vibrant rock music, true to its original form.

Small Jackets are first class musicians: over a thunderous rhythm section, courtesy of drummer Danny Savanas and singer/bass player Mark Oak,  the guitars fly on wings of fire, just like the artwork suggests; Eddy Current and Matt West are different but complementary guitar players, and the variety of their techniques and the dynamic interplay are reminiscent of the great southern rock lesson of bands like The Outlaws and Lynyrd Skynyrd.


After three records and all these years sharing the stages with The Hellacopters, Motorhead, Hardcore Superstar, New York Dolls and more, the band finally signed a record deal with the Swedish label Transubstans, that will hopefully allow the boys to reach a much wider and international audience, and blow some speakers with the new album ‘IV’, a lethal mix of Grand Funk’s primitive fury and smoking guitar pyros; from the instrumental frenzy of the opener ‘Bridge Head’, to the no-nonsense rendition of ZZ Top’s ‘Heard It On The X’ and the funky rock flavors animating the wonderful ‘Mama Said’, ‘IV’ is the definitive statement of this band’s creativity and talent. What else…buy it!

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