Cyanide 4 - Every Day Is A Masquerade

Cyanide 4
Every Day Is A Masquerade
Cyanide 4, started a few years ago and played the bars around Athens, Greece (not Georgia) gathering a small but considerable following of underage groupies. They released a promo and a couple of demos that showed both a bit of promise as well as a flair and love for the neo-Scandi glam and some 4 years later, they are having their debut released by Perris records.
Unfortunately, for them they seem to have rested on some early positive reviews and thus, the final product suffers. Their vocalist struggles, for the most part and even though his vocals have been processed to be tonally correct, they are both accented and lacking in the attitude department. For the most part I felt that the guy was singing while someone was choking him, really.
“Hide in the Shadow” is probably, still the best song, they’ve ever written, taken from an early demo. It opens the album and has a good hook. I have a bit of a doubt, whether the same guy who plays on the track is the same guy who lays down the rather fluid solo, but I suppose a live performance, will be quite telling.
“Live The Life” has a good idea, but the vocals lack conviction and command... being rather nasal and weak. The guy, could have done so much better, had he taken a couple of lessons, but… I guess, nevermind that. The instrumentation is rather spartan, and while the song could have benefited, if it was a bit faster and tighter, that ain’t the case.
“Temptation Failed” another one of the Demo tracks, starts with a somewhat offbeat riff, and while it’s pretty catchy, the production suffers from level differences and some obvious mastering issues. And the singer’s “sssss” sound like a cymbal crash for funks sake. It’s impossible to make out what the hell he’s singing…
“Innocent Alibi” rips off a page from the LA, phonebook, erhm, songbook and it’s wimpy and mid tempo and rather derivative and unimpressive.
“Anything for Fun” has a foot on each continent, but it’s second rate, in its simplicity and plagued, by the same problems as the previous songs.
“Parody” starts off, blasting fast and loud and shows quite a bit of promise. Even the singer sounds better on this one, with more conviction, which makes me think, that the various tracks, must come from different sessions, hence the inconsistency in performances, it would have been quite a highlight, if it had a real chorus and not a one word, repetition followed by a woo-hoo-hoo?! As I stand it’s more like a wasted opportunity and a self-parody.
“Cyanide” is pretty decent actually, decent vocal, decent hook a bit introspective sounding, but actually, quite good.
“FFL” standing for fuck-face-look or sth like that, is a so & so, song, that could have been better, as it has some decent moments, but it has certain moments that drag it down too. Plus the whole, similar sounding rhythms, on the drums are getting a bit tiresome, by this point. Plus, the lyrics, are pathetic. I don’t mean the juvenile themes, I mean the actual command of English, of whoever has written them with all the obvious grammatical mistakes or the lack of meaning behind some of them, an aporia of the fact that they needed to make shit to rhyme.
“Wasting My Time” (probably is what I’m doing reviewing this one) starts off fast, and feels like I’ve heard it before as it shares ideas, from previous songs but is a pretty damn solid song. Actually, it’s the closest thing they have to a hit – but it doesn’t have a chorus, not a proper one at least, it sounds a bit unfinished. If they had the melody of the chorus of say “Hide in the Shadow” on this one, or something, like that it would been a really smashing tune.
“Illusion” is a ballad, a heavy one and while I was half expecting it, to be a shipwreck, like another one, I had seen on youtube, it’s actually ok. There are some not as good moments, but it’s pretty much ok.
“Bad Love Parade” is another of those Demo tracks, given a facelift and while it seems to be the most improved of those batches of songs, it’s still unimpressive.
“Amnesia” is not bad, but it’s far being some sort of highlight. A happy-go lucky, happy song, about forgetting ex-gf’s and last night conquests I guess.
“Midnight Heat” is the train wreck, I described previously, but the guy who mixed it, seems to have pretty much put the song (that I guess must have a different mix on youtube) back on the rails. The lyrics are still, a bit inane (what the hell is a line you draw in a modern way – anyway?) and not that meaningful and I totally mean that in a bad way, but at least, in this form, the song, is not as terrible, as the youtube video version, that from what I’ve seen has now been taken down.
So, over all we have a second or third rate, Crashdiet/Hardcore Superstar clone, with a disjointed debut, plagued by the cheap production, a fact they tried to tackle by getting a pro mix/mastering job done, but not to the point that the final result is totally passable and certainly way far from top-notch (what the hell was the guy who wrote the press release on?) with a singer that has quite a few shortcoming but shows signs of improvement on certain songs, but still needs to work a great deal on both delivery and with the attitude. The have decent but a little repetitive ideas on most songs and still show a flair of promise. For better or worse, this is their debut release.
Hard work and proper touring may get them more noticed, because attitude alone, won’t carry them further than the toilets of local rock clubs.