Cobra Spell – Love Venom (Self-Released)Friday, 11th September 2020
When the iconic Alice Cooper suggests you follow your dreams to make music together, you should listen. That fuels the auspicious start of Cobra Spell – a European/ American unit that features members who have had (or currently have) involvement with acts like Idle Hands, Burning Witches, and Spellcaster. Guitarists Sonia Anubis and Sebastian Silva started the group in the summer of 2019, ramping up the lineup to quintet status and releasing their debut four song EP here with Love Venom. It’s easy to hear the addictive sound of 80’s/early 90’s melodic hard rock and metal from the California scene firmly in the sights of these musicians – the heartfelt vocals, the catchy guitar hooks and harmonies, along with a potent rhythm section to keep the listeners in the groove and swinging.
The upper register and twisted grit of singer Alexx Panza has that Sunset Strip meets Zach Slaughter/Skull Fist quality that makes cuts like “Come on Tonight” and the title track with its semi-ballad atmosphere resonate with those fans of Rough Cutt, Keel, or even a little Skid Row from the East Coast. As far as axe work and songwriting goes, Sonia and Sebastian strike all the right chords with diverse pacing in mid-tempo anthem to arena rock templates – the opening guitar action for “Poison Bite” aligning well to old W.A.S.P. meets 80’s Judas Priest measures as the duo fill the landscape with delightful hooks and accents that keep your ears riveted. The best thing about a shorter EP like Love Venom is the ability to showcase all facets of the band – and these songs contain enough hip shaking, groove-based action that the fists will fly high, the alcohol should overflow, hopefully creating new memories for a style that hasn’t faded away.
Heavy music can be fun again as long as bands like Cobra Spell choose to crank out material like Love Venom. A bright gem with unlimited potential to hopefully prove that this style has potent life from the younger generation willing to put their own stamp on things.