It’s easy to imagine Vanna as being on par with great post-hardcore and metalcore bands like Every Time I Die and such, but there’s just something lacking here. Perhaps when former vocalist Chris Preece left back in 2009, he realised that the band weren’t really going anywhere particularly exciting with their musical direction. This album unfortunately doesn’t contradict such a statement.
For starters, it’s a short album, coming in at 28 minutes and it feels anything but short in all honesty. The opening title-track is practically just a build-up with plenty of guitar feedback which lasts under 2 minutes. The subsequent tracks are less tedious, but that really isn’t saying much considering the dire start that the album gets off to. One thing that does strike you though is how great the guitars sound, they genuinely throttle and chug away as if the band is playing in your front room, so there aren’t any production issues on this record whatsoever.
Tracks like ‘Casket Rhythm’ and ‘A Thin Place’ work much better than when the band try to do slow tempo on ‘I Said I’m Fine’, as they’re better served just going for it and making short hardcore tracks in the vein of bands like Thick As Blood. The problem is that there isn’t anything here that couldn’t be found with a simple search on YouTube for this type of thing. There’s no real unique selling point to Vanna and that’s a real shame.
If you’re looking for some real cut and thrust hardcore music that’s edgy, new and different, then don’t bother with this as it’s quite frankly not up there with the majority of bands doing exactly this type of thing and offering much more interesting material. It isn’t awful, it’s just nothing that anyone who likes metal music hasn’t heard a million times before.
Written by Greg Spencer