Album Review: Bad Pollyanna – The Broken Toys

Bad Pollyanna - Broken ToysAnother UK band pushing boundaries and doing their thing is hard rock quartet form the dark side, Bad Pollyanna. Armed with some hook-filled shock-rocking tunes and a striking look, they are most definitely an interesting proposition.

Bad Pollyanna’s biggest strength lies in the charismatic vocals of Olivia Hyde; she has a superb range and seems capable of anything from spoken word to operatic. Theatrical opener ‘Define Me’ and the heavy ‘Pull the Trigger’ show her hard rock chops, while stand-out track, the industrial influenced ‘Hooks’, with its heavy-assed riff and great, er… hook, showcases the full extent of the band’s talents.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VFPjFbc7Jeo&w=100&h=420]

There are a number of influences on display, stylistic comparisons to Marilyn Manson being unavoidable, but we also get pop-influenced tracks like ‘Bionic Heart’ and ‘Ugly Love’, a touch of electronica on ‘Create Me’ and classic hard rock on the Halestorm-esque ‘Out of my Mind’ and the sinister title track. They even do heartfelt acoustic on ‘I See You’, which given the theme of empowerment and the general concept of being proud of your differences being part of the band’s schtick, it’s sure to be a winner with those kids getting the rough end.

I genuinely admire Bad Pollyanna’s talents and their sincere application to making the world a better place, but from a critic’s eye view, there seems to be a little sameness running through the record. For instance, there’s a good sense of timing within arrangements, but many tracks follow a similar blueprint, so there’s often a sense of having heard it before, which is also true of the familiar sounding melodies and rhythms.

Even so, there is definite potential on display here and, with a little more development and some heavy touring, they could be ready for the next level.

3.5/5

‘Broken Toys’ by Bad Pollyanna is out now.

Bad Pollyanna links: Website|Facebook|Twitter

Words by Edward Layland (@EdwardLayland)

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