The Future Ain’t What It Used To Be is Atlanta quartet, Biters, latest album. Released on 19th May via Earache Records it’s a long anticipated follow up to 2015’s critically acclaimed Electric Blood.
This record is not so much an album to be added to your collection but is a musical time machine.
Biters take their listeners on a whirlwind 33 minute, 10 stop trip through the 1970’s with a foray into the 1980’s.
The first stop is Let It Roll. Instantly catchy. Toe tapping. This is a strong choice for an opening track and sets the scene nicely for the journey ahead.
Stone Cold Love that follows is a stronger choice of track, launching the listener into the glam rock hey day of the 1970’s. Vocalist Tuk Smith is definitely channelling his inner Marc Bolan here. Love this track.
A couple of songs further along our sonic journey and we voyage into the mid-1980’s. There’s a distinctive pop vibe in the air. Perhaps a swing away from their rock roots but Don’t Turn This Good Heart Bad is a first rate, radio friendly tune with perhaps a hint of Brian Adams. A subtle diversion from the classic sounds of the 1970’s that these boys excel at.
The next track Gypsy Rose is one of my personal favourites on this album. This is a classic 1970’s stomp. It’s Sweet, Mud, Slade and the Bay City Rollers all squeezed into 3 mins 8 secs of prime glam rock. Having had the pleasure of seeing Biters live last month, this is a monster live that the Glasgow fans lapped up. Love it!
The Future Ain’t What It Used To Be is full of surprises. One of these is Vulture City. Just when you think you’ve got Biters’ genre sussed, they toss in a dose of punk. This one oozes anger and angst. Right from the off, the head’s nodding to this one. Great track.
Biters change the mood with the following song and slow things down with Hollywood. Love the piano intro here. Hollywood is a powerful sweeping ballad. Tuk’s vocals are raw and emotion filled. Who doesn’t dream of a star on Hollywood Boulevard? Beautiful.
When I saw Biters supporting Blackberry Smoke last month, the final song on this record was on the set list. The audience were treated to a story of how this song came into being after a few drunken band adventures or should that be mis-adventures in Helsinki before finally boarding their flight home. Goin’ Back To Georgia is the only track, in my humble opinion, to hint at their southern rock roots. You can take the boy out of Atlanta….well you know the rest! This is a gentle ballad. It’s an emotional song about going home, something every weary traveller the world over can relate to. Stunning song to bring our time travelling to an end.
This record takes you on an incredible sonic journey spanning decades and, quite simply, I love it.