Album review: Stone Mary – Hell Bound Gypsy Train

September 16, 2011

Stone Mary - Hell Bound Gypsy Train album artworkTitle: Hell Bound Gypsy Train
Artist: Stone Mary
Label: Independent
Released: July 2011
In one word: Mind-numbing

There are some really great artists around right but the trouble is that they are often obscured beneath a surfeit of mediocrity. Artists like Stone Mary, from Nova Scotia, take mediocrity to its mind-numbing peak.

Where do we start with this? The Guitar Hero riffs? The bland, cookie-cutter arrangements that sound like a project patched together with a few GarageBand loops? The pointless and totally unmerited guitar solos? Get a calendar. This is 2011 not 1987 and you are not Slash making Appetite For Destruction or Eddie Van Halen making 1984, so there is no excuse. The trying-way-too-hard-to-look-badass-but-failing-completely album cover photograph of front lady Christine Campbell? (I wouldn’t be surprised the snag in Campbell’s fishnets was even added right before that photograph was taken). Say cheeeeeese.

It’s obvious what this Halifax, NS are aiming for but the end result just sounds phony. And absolutely outdated too – a plastic, soulless imitation of what rock and roll used to be, and totally irrelevant in 2011. If you want to hear hard rock in 2011 worth listening to then wait for the new Darkness album due out later this year – that will be fun.

An atrociously bland, bland, bland, paint-by-numbers rock album.  Here’s the kicker: Hell Bound Gypsy Train is currently nominated for two Music Nova Scotia Awards: Rock Recording of the Year and Loud Recording of the Year. Shocker.

© Brian Banks, Editor, Music Vice

Internet link: Stone Mary

Brian Banks

Editor and Founder, Music Vice Magazine. Writer. Photographer. Poet. From Scotland. Not Ireland. Proudly based in Toronto, Canada. Rock N' Roll Don't Pay The Rent... 

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4 Responses to Album review: Stone Mary – Hell Bound Gypsy Train

  1. Colin on November 12, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    “…Get a calendar. This is 2011 not 1987 and you are not Slash making Appetite For Destruction or Eddie Van Halen making 1984, so there is no excuse…”
    Wow…hard to believe these comments come from a guy who’s thinks his site logo and name are witty. Perhaps it’s time you ditched you pastels and your man crush for Rico and Tubbs and took your own advice and looked at a calendar. I’m glad I bought this disc. It’s awesome and I can’t wait to see them live.

  2. Greg on November 15, 2011 at 9:04 am

    What’s funny is this album WON Loud recording of the year at the MNS awards this year. (a category created to include metal?)

  3. Rock Johnson on December 14, 2011 at 9:23 am

    This “review” seesm to have a personal agenda. To deem any music irrelevant to a time period is moronic. There’s a reason music is timeless and that trends come and go. He really didn’t review the album, but more push his opinions about the genre… disappointing.

    I don’t review country albums cause I know I dislike country music. I don’t review Hip Hop cause I don’t understand what makes it good or bad. How can I possibly offer a relevant review something I don’t like/understand? Asking someone who primarily listens to Alan Jackson what their opinion on Rage Against The Machine is is pointless.

    This guy sounds like an angry disgruntled musician with a chip on his shoulder… rather than an individual who can deliver an insightful review. I wonder if Appetite for Destruction came out this year would he slam that too? Seems to me most music on rock radio these days is a tip of the hat to the 80’s style of music. The genre is more relevant right now than it has been for 20 years. There are still many many fans of this genre around the world, that is who you should be reviewing for, if you can’t do that you probably shouldn’t offer reviews.

    It’s OK to give a bad review but I would expect that it would deliver more insight than to discover the authors personal musical tastes.

  4. Richard Johnson on March 12, 2014 at 8:44 am

    The Album is bruuuuuutallll.. Absolutely trying to hard.. Solo’s on your knees that suck? C’mon Campbell! The whole thing is a parody of the 80’s.. Except much worse.. Simple unimaginative riffs, predictable and simple lyrics, up inspirational junk. Who would actually pop this album in and listen to it? Who des it appeal to? Nobody but her family would be my guess!

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