Not the leaders of the pack, just yet.
This debut for Roaring Colonel Records makes clear the elemental links between Phil Spector, glam-rock and shoegaze. Burnt Ones hit the raw simplicity but cannot emulate the utter worship of the voice so essential to the 1960s girl-groups and the Wall-of-Sound’s epic, romantic sensibility. “Bring You All My Love” perhaps comes closest with its spoken intro and spacious echoes of “Leader of The Pack”. As for the glam, even allowing for the fact that no one can match the fabulous yelping androgyny of Bolan and 1970s Bowie, the vocal mix on “Gonna Listen to T.Rex (All Night Long)” still left me admiring the title most. “Never Gonna Die” does feature the most enveloping, buzzsaw, shoegazey guitar on the record but “Only Ones” is more Roy Orbison-lite than the neglected band of that name.
Black Teeth & Golden Tongues doesn’t add up to what might be expected from the sum of the influences, though it's no surprise that members of Burnt Ones admit that they'd love to be produced by Shadow Morton, Spector (from jail) or Joe Meek (from beyond the grave). I think the seance option might be the best choice to achieve a magical balance of voices that exude melodic innocence and sex appeal. At least the group has defined its approach and influences. Nothing on the album should prove tricky to perform and fans will surely be won over by these songs in a live setting. Burnt Ones can build upon this potential and avoid sounding more “back to monotony” than Back to Mono.