PISTON - Piston (Album)
PISTON’s eagerly-awaited debut album has been a long time coming. Having scrapped the original album they recorded, in pursuit of finding their true, authentic sound, the Cannock based rockers started the whole process again from scratch. The result of their toil is the ten track eponymous release, which will be launched on Friday 13th September 2019. The album was recorded at Silk Mill Studios in Newcastle under Lyme and produced by Dan Swift (IGGY POP).
Also included are two bonus tracks in the shape of alternate versions of the singles ‘One More Day’ and ‘Rainmaker’, remixed by Romesh Dodangoda (BRING ME THE HORIZON, STONE BROKEN). The band take to the road to promote the album, with COLLATERAL in September, and on the Planet Rock Roadstars tour with HANNAH WICKLUND & THE STEPPIN’ STONES and GORILLA RIOT, in October. They have also won a Planet Rock competition to earn a spot on the New Wave of Classic Rock Rising Stage at Ramblin’ Man Fair this month and it’s just been announced that they’ll also be playing Planet Rock’s Winter’s End next February. The PISTON lads’ feet will barely have time to touch the ground, but before we go and see them, let’s get our teeth into their album!
Serving up chunks of anthemic rock interspersed with slices of blues and slabs of rock ’n’ roll, the opener is explosively, and appropriately, entitled ‘Dynamite’. It’s a song about following your instincts, taking the steps that feel right to you to achieve what you desire. It’s about believing that nothing in the universe can stop what you really want from exploding into your life, like dynamite. With pounding drums and monster riffs to drive the message home, it certainly gets my attention.
Current single ‘Rainmaker’ is a full-bodied, swaggering tune about how finding internal peace helps us achieve what we crave in life, and about the fact that we may need to move around a bit in order to achieve this. I won’t dwell on the intricacies in the song in too much detail as we previously reviewed the single here: https://www.downthefrontmedia.com/latest-music-reviews/2019/5/31/piston-rainmaker-single The single has been garnering attention from some of the big radio stations and is now in its fourth week on the Planet Rock playlist.
The funky ‘Go Now’ is all about following your heart, regardless of the opinions of others. It’s about not being influenced by other people, and focusses on how important it is to make our own decisions. This song is really upbeat but beneath its hooky chorus, the lyrics touch on love, death, self-realisation and achieving our hopes and dreams. This song really stands out and the lively riffs, bass beat and solid drumming combined with the intensely catchy chorus make it one of those songs that make it impossible for you to sit still when it’s playing!
‘Carry Us Home’ is all about our relationships, with everything and everyone. It examines those relationships and takes a good hard look at how that initial spark dulls and how we maybe grow complacent over time. Decisions need to be made about whether we stick around or spread our wings; whatever we decide to do, love will Carry Us Home. Although at times this is a melancholic track, the vocal harmonies are uplifting and the killer rising riffs are a highlight, Rob’s vocals, gravelly and raw in places bringing out the emotions.
If there is one thing many of us are guilty of, it’s trying to turn the clock back. We could learn a lot by listening to ‘One More Day’. It’s is a song about learning to move forward with the natural progression of time and not looking back. The scuzzy riffs and raspy vocals give a vintage tinge to the song, making it feel a little old school.
The crushing ‘Beyond Repair’ looks deep within us and at society as a whole, examining the conflict there and questioning the decisions we make. It’s got a deliciously sleazy beat and harmonious riff, which makes you want to get up and move. I can see this going down a storm live; the bridge is perfect for a load of fists in the air!
You can feel the rage and resentment through the lyrics on ‘Leave If You Dare’. It’s a gloriously dark classic rock song about dealing with the fine line between choosing to listen to the voice inside your head or ignore it. The riffs on this track are face-meltingly fine.
‘Blow It Away’ is an energetic, riff-fuelled tune about not really knowing what life is all about, but also not taking life too seriously as the day might just come when it all suddenly makes sense. It’s another catchy, hook laden track.
‘Let Us Rise’ is about not doing things for other people and doing things for yourself instead, taking the power back for yourself. It’s about the sudden realisation that you need to be in control and make that change. The guitars have a ’70s vibe in places, there is some great staccato drumming through the bridge and then a great classic rock ending.
‘Into The Night’ is about comprehending that everybody battles dark thoughts at times and that we need to understand this and give ourselves time to explore this darkness within ourselves. It’s about realising that sometimes this needs to happen so that we can grasp the way back to the light, and have patience and understanding with ourselves, and other people. The guitars have quite a psychedelic feeling, further enhancing the lyrics, but this feels like quite a short song that doesn’t quite manage to take flight. Bonus remixes of ‘One More Day’ and ‘Rainmaker’ are included and make a nice ending to the album.
This debut album is receiving rave reviews that go some way to reflect the amount of hard work and musicianship that it’s taken to produce the versatile range of songs on offer. With national radio play and tours with prominent bands and festivals happening, it’s clear that PISTON’s team of five are a force to be reckoned with. I look forward to seeing them cranking it up a notch live!
Pre-order a copy of the album/get your hands on all manner of other goodies or an album/tour ticket bundle here: http://bit.ly/PistonStore
See Piston live:
21 Jul - Maidstone, Ramblin’ Man Fair
26 Jul - Ripley, Rock and Blues Custom Show Festival
10 Aug - Ratlinghope, Farmer Phil’s Festival
12 Sep - Leicester, The Musician
13 Sep - Cannock, The Station
14 Sep - Liverpool, EBGBS
20 Sep - Birmingham, Asylum
21 Sep - Nottingham, Rock City
22 Sep - Manchester, Jimmy’s
26 Sep - Southampton, Joiners
27 Sep - Wigan, The Boulevard
28 Sep - London, Big Red
03 Oct - Chester, The Live Rooms
04 Oct - Manchester, Rebellion
05 Oct - Birmingham, Flapper
06 Oct - Norwich, Waterfront Studio
08 Oct - Newcastle, Cluny 2
09 Oct - Leeds, The Lending Room
10 Oct - Bristol, Exchange
11 Oct - London, O2 Academy Islington
07 Nov - Wolverhampton, KK’s Steel Mill (with Phil Campbell & The Bastard Sons)
29 Feb - Poole, Winter’s End
Rob Angelico - Vocals
Jack Edwards - Guitar
Luke Allatt - Guitar
Brad Newlands - Drums
Stuart Egan - Bass