Revolvers - "Self-titled"
Locket Love Records

The Revolvers are one of a current set of bands working hard to remove the stigma that goes along with the word “emo."

Along with other bands like A New Found Glory, Saves The Day and Alkaline Trio, the Revolvers make songs that are not at all bashful about prefessing love and desire, generally unrequited. But unlike so many sappy, tearjerking "emo" acts before them, the Revolvers show that to have a sensitive side does not equate a lack of a spine as well.

The Revolvers do have a heartfelt, "emo" message behind many of their songs, but the music and energy that drives those lyrics home has more rock in it, rather than being sad and forlorn. There's little submissiveness to the Revolvers' sound.

That little bit of editorializing out of the way, let's move on to the CD. The Revolvers’ disc is all of the things that I mentioned above – and more.

The tracks all have a distinct rock and roll vibe, punked-up here and there to give it more of an edge. “Better Off Alone” has a start-off that wouldn’t be out of place for any pogo-punk act worth its salt. The same is true with “There’s A Heart” and the first track, “All I Want to Know,” which does a fine job of going between the song's melodic rock feel and the slightly punk, Face To Face-like chorus.

However, it’s when the Revolvers switch things up a bit that the disc really grabbed my ear. There are spots in all of the songs that have a distinct country twang to them, and they’re there just long enough to make you say “huh?” and then they’re gone. It’s enough to hook your attention, without breaking up the flow of the songs.

“Annie” and “New Depression” even border on being  rockabilly-ish numbers. The only thing that keeps them from going over that border is the lack of a heavier bassline. “Not Really Blue” is a drinking and smoking your troubles away number in the truest of Hank Williams' style. “Standin’ Sadly” wouldn’t be out of place at a roadhouse jukebox, either.

This creative blending of styles is rarely done so well without the loss of a consistent identity, but the Revolvers make it look easy.

The Revolvers’ self-titled release is well worth the money. An interesting balance of punk, rock, and country, it bears listening to several times to catch all the nuances that reside within.

However, my final recommendation must be to see them live before purchasing this disc – if for no other reason than to see how much they’ve progressed since this album's release.

A live set will also help you appreciate the interplay between the guitar and bass, which is slightly lost on the CD due to drums that are a little hot in the mix. But most importantly, a live set will show you first-hand the sincerity and energy of the Revolvers, who never seem to give less than 110% to the music.