VEER – Apocalyptic, Baby
- Power Drive
- Come Clean
- On Top
- Lost and Found
- Make You
Ronald Malfi – Vocals/Guitar
Ryan Fowler – Lead Guitar/Vocals
Christian Mathis – Bass
Jon Malfi – Drums
Award winning Maryland rockers VEER released their debut album ‘Apocalyptic, Baby’ on December 1, 2018, and immediately broke the Amazon Top 100 rock album sales upon release. The band supported the record release with a sold-out CD release show. VEER closed out the year performing live at the 2018 Maryland Music Awards, where they were nominated for two awards, and took home the award for Best Rock Band.
I first heard Apocalyptic, Baby on a cold Friday afternoon in December, between Christmas and New Year’s Eve. I was alone in the house so the volume was up pretty damned high. Impressed is not a word I use lightly, but VEER are the type of band that deserves that particular title. This is probably the last album review that I write in 2018, is this a case of ‘saving the best ’til last’? It just might be, it just might be.
So, what about the music? Apocalyptic, Baby is made up of 12 superb, original, rhythm-driven alt-rock tracks that deliver on so many levels. Whether it be the beautiful vocal of White or the sheer hard edged power of Douse, VEER can boast plenty of ammo in their armory.
The album kicks off with the popular “Power Drive”. A track that has helped carve out VEER’s reputation these last few months. It’s a solid rocker to open the album with and has a heavy riff that engages from the start. As an opener “Power Drive” makes the statement that these guys mean business. “White” soon follows and is a contrast to the powerful opener. “White” is a gorgeous, softer number with a memorable chorus line that will stick with you forever and a guitar solo by Ryan Fowler that cries to you. “White” has vibes of The Red Hot Chili Peppers, but I do mean good Red Hot Chili Peppers. We are then treated to the wonderful “Come Clean” another track that is well known by VEER’s supporters. “Come Clean” is one of those numbers that will have your hips shaking and your fist pumping the air. Next up is my personal favourite,”Douse”. “Douse” is the track that I play to people first if I want them to hear what VEER are about. It is five and a half minutes of the best head shaking, chorus shouting rock around. I love the way you can hear just how tight a unit VEER is on this one.
“Breathe” is next. “Breathe” is another quieter track that soon evolves into a stunning, powerful love song. It wouldn’t surprise me if “Breathe” caught the attention of the ‘right people’ out there to draw Veer to a larger audience. “On Top” and “Lost and Found” closely follow the ‘well written, well played, cracking rock song’ formula that VEER are so good at.
I was taken right back to early Sabbath when Christian Mathis began the opening bass line to the steady rocker “Make You”, very Geezer Butler-esque. “Make You” contains the classic line “I was dumb enough to find my mind, but then I lost my soul” … brilliant. “Brave” is a hard, in your face number that deserves the ‘play it loud’ treatment. Straight forward rock riffs and awesome Ronald Malfi vocals give “Brave” that comfort food splendour, it will make you smile. “Brother” is a little different, it is a more of a classic rock song, but that doesn’t make it any less of a great track. It is the turn of Jon Malfi to shine on “Brother” as he confidently attacks the kit with ferocious skill, driving it along nicely. “Reasons” is a return to a more VEER like sound. “Reasons” comes complete with the expected well played rock sound that you’d associate with VEER. Album closer, “Hesitant” is a bit reminiscent, a ‘sum it all up’ track. “Hesitant” is a track about being afraid to make that decision. We’ve all been there at some point. A great number to end the album on.
“Apocalyptic, Baby” is a well played, well written debut that I urge you to listen to. It has moments of beauty, moments of power and plenty of moments of excellence. VEER have delivered an album that they can be very proud of. Did I save the best til last…you bet I did.
Band location – Annapolis Maryland
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