When you’re a female-fronted rock band of any kind, you shouldn’t kick off your album by having your singer say some clichéd rock thing with a fuzz-box effect. It just makes the listener recoil in fear. After hearing that first uttered vocal-line, I was almost immediately convinced that this EP was going to be cringe-worthy. Thankfully (Re: Mercifully) it wasn’t nearly as terrible as that initial setup lead me to believe it would be.
In fact, Rock Ignition proves to be a decent distraction. They’re not the best band doing this kind of thing, but certainly not the worst. They show off a set of serviceable, even occasionally genuinely entertaining hard rock tricks, including serviceable, blue-collar solos and solid, even interesting drum work. Honestly, even with the clichéd moments, this is still a mostly fun romp of an EP.
After the fairly rocking opener, second track “Tell Me” is, honestly, completely destroyed by pop-rock aspirations filtered through hard rock realities; at best this sounds like the heaviest moments of Shania Twain’s discography. That track is definitely the low point of the release, with “One Love” and “In the Light” sounding not unlike material that one might find on a release by Reckless Love if they were fronted by a woman. “In the Light” even has a short mid-section that reminds of certain mid-years Yngwie Malmsteen ballads.
The closer, “Streets of New York” is easily the best tune on here. It offers a convincing hard rock stomp that got me nodding my head. The solo blazes, the drums pulse, and Heather Shockley pulls out some genuinely interesting vocal moves. A whole EP of material at this caliber would have been a damn near perfect product.
This may be a band to watch. If they can ratchet-up the intensity and allow the instrumentalists a little more time to shine, Rock Ignition could very well be the next Sister Sin. At the moment, this EP is a pretty simple product: Imperfect but fun hard rock with a ton of potential.