It’s not a Led Zeppelin reunion, but it’s the next best thing in terms of modern music: Texas hard rockers Scorpion Child. Although the band has been around for seven years, they have started to garner most of their attention within the past year. They’ve played sets at some of the biggest festivals out there including South by Southwest, Rock on the Range, Rocklahoma, and Mayhem Festival. Their debut album Scorpion Child (Nuclear Blast) is a solid start to say the least.
Album opener ‘Kings Highway’ sounds a song one would choose to use in a movie scene involving driving. It’s not just the title; but also the force behind the song and the glamorization of the road. It is also very much Zeppelin with singer Aryn Jonathan Black wailing like Robert Plant. This is something listeners will pick up on throughout the entire album.
The following track is the band’s first single and video off the album ‘Polygon Of Eyes’. It’s the kind of song that can be appropriately marked as the ascension of a band and a conquering of the musical landscape. Lyrics such as ‘A time sent event horizon / Will leave our stories behind’ suggest that the group is prepared to enjoy a lasting legacy.
‘Antioch’ is where the band begins to show a bit of a softer side. Even though it’s not as hard as the previous tunes it’s nice to just get lost in the sound and let the guitar wash over the listener. There are some similarities to be noted between the track and ‘2112’ off of Rush’s landmark album 2112, namely the fifth part ‘Oracle: the Dream’. After ‘Antioch’ though, it’s right back to the party up until the final track ‘Red Blood (The River Flows)’ which is despite what the title suggests, is a rather low-key and mellow song. It is also longer than the others clocking in at over 13 minutes.
Overall the album is one you can get lost in and that’s not a bad thing. Repeat listens do not bore the listener as is sometimes the case with modern albums. The only thing the band really needs to be aware of is that there are negatives as well as positives in being so often compared to Zeppelin. It may be easier for them to win fans since the rock godfathers will probably never make another album together and there is still such a demand for them. In that way, Scorpion Child has the potential to appeal to many audiences that others cannot. However, accusations of being a rip-off band may also arise and jeopardize their credibility. Don’t let it stop you from listening to them. You’ll only be missing out.