You know the scenario: you are driving down the highway in route to your favorite hangout joint, the one you know by heart, and then suddenly you are detoured – lost – on a whole other exit. Soon, you make some turns, trying to find your way back to your route, but you spot another place that looks interesting to enjoy socializing and a few shots of your favorite drink. You check it out and now it becomes your NEW hangout spot.
Have you ever experienced that scenario – where old becomes a lost moment and in finding your way back you discover a new “best?” Sure – we all have some way or another. And what is so awesome about this scene is that every turn to get to the destination sparked some new emotion, thought, or fact. “1 Lane Hwy” by Thorns Inside does that very same thing to its listeners.
This 13-track, Rock, EP will blow your mind! Coming from the creative minds of Thorns Inside, each track leads you down different exits of interesting Rock music concepts. The track listing is as follows:
- Waste Away
- 1 Lane Hwy
- Can’t Help but Love You
- Live Today
- Fallen Apart
- Dangerous Ground
- Thief of Love
- Runaway with My Heart
- Riding High
- The Day Before
- Day of Destruction
This is my interpretation of the album’s nine highlights.
“Waste Away” opens the album with that wonderful Metal massive sound and prepares you for the ride of your life. Guitars blazing and hi-hats spanking, the track’s message is about starting over when there is nothing left to fix.
I loved the hook’s two-part harmony with that high, crisp falsetto dancing with the second-tenor/baritone. It is rich and delivers an ah-some package of nostalgic Rock. Now, on to the title track that keeps up the force of the preceding track.
"1 Lane Hwy" does keep up the force of its predecessor, but places the pedal to the metal a bit more with an accelerated tempo. The guitar riff that plays peek-a-boo in this track is nothing short of splendid. The lead vocalist’s notes go from short-form to long-form modulations and trills. This is the concert opener! And when it comes to the third track, “Can’t Help but Love You,” “thrill-ride” is the only two words that comes to mind.
The lyrical message of the third track paints the picture of true love and undying devotion and just makes you feel good. The twists and turns on this track make for a commercial-ready song that should be in rotation right now on all radio platforms. "Can't Help but Love You" feature awesome layered choruses and melodies that are addicting. Check out the video here!
“Dangerous Ground” uses a lower register lead vocalist and spine-tingling guitars that seem to set this track on fire! That signature guitar riff that is the backbone of the track is classic and strong – very memorable.
A nice twist on this musical road is “L.D.D.” – this is an excerpt that includes a nice Dirty South melody utilizing tambourines, guitars, and a lead vocalist that has a low smooth growl. This in turn quickly joins a higher octave vocal counterpart and then the curtain closes. Which leads us into the eighth track “Thief of Love.”
A jam session of excited guitars ignites “Thief of Love” – a seductively, trancing, mid-tempo Rock ballad that captures the angst one feels when contemplating love's many mysteries – the instrumentation does this spot on by exhilaratingly climbing and then stooping low to almost purring. Then, at the two minutes / 24 seconds mark, the guitar takes center stage with a melodramatic solo. Nicely done!
Another turn in the road comes with “Runaway with My Heart” – a track that touches on the topic of heartbreak.
The ninth track is just a beautiful Rock slow-dance maker that gets the heart strings all twisted up. The way the lead opens the track with anguish-filled notes and ends each melody with a yearning elongating note is artful. The guitar repeating the main melody back to the singer is splendid – very instrumentally conversational in its execution. Lighters in the air for this track!
“The Day Before” is yet another twist on “1 Lane Hwy” – this excerpt features anthemic orchestration created by synths and guitars solely. Let’s call it a Rock-Rest-Stop before heading to the last track included in this review – the power ballad “You.”
“You” echoes those power ballads we made love to, danced to, and sang along with back in the day – you know the ones. The layered hooks on this track are FIRE! It was a nice creative touch to allow the backing vocals to announce the first lyrics to the verses before the lead sings the entire verse. The low modulations that lead to a vocal, and tempo, drawback before the bridge adds mystery.
And, there is no missing that FAB guitar solo that leads to the final verse of "You." It is a song of longing, and the lead makes sure to place an emphasis on this emotion by swooning instead of singing.
So first, let me say that I am so stoked that music like this still exists. It brings back so many memories and excites you to make more high-energy memories.
“1 Lane Hwy” is definitely a Heavy Metal Rock album that devotees of Mötley Crüe, Led Zeppelin, Judas Priest, Def Leppard, Metallica, and Korn will LOVE! Thorns Inside takes the chemistry of those bands, kisses that chemistry with their signature riffs, melodies, highly amplified guitars, distorted guitars, along with extended guitar solos and songwriting, and wraps it up in a box tied with a metal-studded bow.
Thorns Inside hails from North Carolina, USA and consists of Paul Bowman (Lead & Backing Vocals/Rhythm Guitar), Frankie Bauguess (Lead, Rhythm, & Acoustic Guitars, Keyboards, Percussion, Backing Vocals), Steven Lee Adams (Bass Guitar), and Scotty Irving (percussions / Backing Vocals).
All songs were written by Paul Bowman and Frank Bauguess (except for "Can't Help but Love You," "Thief of Love," and “Riding High" by Paul Bowman, Frankie Bauguess, Charles Heller, and Johnny Oakley).
This EP is seasoned and funky with a whole lot of metal. It gives us that throwback hunger that we love and mixes it with that new Metal demand that we bang our heads to right now.
I call it “Millennial Metal” and I love it! Follow the guys here and DM them for a copy of “1 Lane Hwy” – this is one Indie Music exit you do NOT want to miss!