This Blackburn four-piece rock outfit has been getting a lot of attention lately with their blisteringly, earth shaking live performances up and down the UK, as rather than pastiching the sounds and styles of earlier rock bands, Sky Valley Mistress capture that spirit and channel it into something fresh and modern.
Now, at long last comes their debut album ‘Faithless Rituals’ and it doesn’t disappoint. It begins with a spoken intro from Dave Catching (Eagles of Death Metal) – in whose Californian studio this album was recorded. This gravelly call to arms leads straight into ‘You Got Nothin’, a sudden wall of sound that hits you square in the chest as the drums pound and the guitars rip… and then that voice. Kayley Davies’ vocal goes from power scream to a barely a whisper and back up again in this excellent opening track.
Faithless Rituals, is an exceptional first album that more than shows off the individual talents of the band members. From Sean Berry’s bluesy guitar sounds on ‘It Won’t Stop’, the thunderous drums of Maxwell Newsome III propelling their pre-release single ‘Skull & Pistons’ along at breakneck speed (don’t listen to this track while driving as before you know it you’ll be flooring that accelerator), to the powerful bass work of Russell ‘Russell’ Russell providing a solid backbeat throughout the disc. They come together particularly well on ‘Blue Desert’ an 11-minute, bourbon infused epic that has already become a live highlight.
Rounding off the disc is the the pulsing ‘Electric Church’ that leaves you wanting before we go back to Dave for the final word.
And my final word? More please.
Faithless Rituals is out now via New Heavy Sounds.