Review: The St. Pierre Snake Invasion – Caprice Enchanté

Fantastic name aside, The St. Pierre Snake Invasion have a lot going for them. Armed with a unique sound, their 2015 debut was a promising blast of noise-rock wearing knuckledusters, that never did what you expected. After endless delays, new album ‘Caprice Enchanté’ is finally here! Having fought to be heard, it’s light on its feet and punches above its weight.

Opening out like a snarling dog the band go directly for the throat. You’re getting riffs, but they’ve pushed away the direct sound. ‘Casanovacaine’ proves they can craft fast and fun songs, if they want to. However, for the most part they’re restlessly exploring. Songs like ‘Remystery’ are built around space. The guitars sit back giving Sam James space to thrash his drums, only to come stabbing back in the most effective way. Elsewhere the angry screeches and riffs take centre stage, but never smother the details.

Crucially, when they shift gear on ‘The Idiot’s Guide To Music’ or the gentle ‘It Gave A Lovely Light’, it’s consistently interesting and well-executed. You’ll also be able to hear similarities to Future Of The Left, with whom the band share common ground.  Similarly, Damien Sayell’s vocals are abrasive and brimming with smart witty lyrics. He spends a lot of time yelling, yet he smuggles in plenty of melody, it’s quite a trick.

Producer Sean Genockey’s busy schedule caused delays, but was worth waiting for. The sound batters you from every imaginable angle, pushing all the separate elements to create a jigsaw of pieces that, amazingly, slot together. Especially on ‘Carroll A. Deering’, which dumps a dustbin full of ideas and yet somehow works. You suspect they’ve been taking lessons from The Chariot. Not least when it randomly erupts into humming, then almost beats you to death with an unexpected riff.

Challenging and noisy as hell ‘Caprice Enchanté’ is a brilliant street-fight of sleaze and cynicism. It’ll leave you bruised and battered but it’s not all brawn and that’s its strength.

4/5

Caprice Enchanté’ by The St. Pierre Snake Invasion is released on 21st June.

The St. Pierre Snake Invasion links: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Bandcamp

Words by Ian Kenworthy (@WhisperingSand)

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