By Adrien Begrand
Yeah, we get it, you deathcore bands sure can play, but would it kill you to dial down the ostentatious bursts of technical dexterity enough to a) give us a breather and b) try to come up with a passage that we can actually remember? Take Toronto’s Starring Janet Leigh, for instance, who despite the Scene-pandering moniker, displays extreme metal chops that are at times jaw-dropping, but we’re damned if we can actually recollect what they’ve just played 30 seconds before. That’s not to say their debut album isn’t totally a lost cause, as there’s a tantalizing 70s progressive rock element that keeps creeping into their music, as if Frank Zappa and Robert Fripp are trying to bust into a jam between Psyopus and Every Time I Die, those little wonky bursts of creativity enough to break the monotony of constant blasting and hardcore dissonance. Still, though, a lack of focus plagues this 50 minute record, when 35 minutes usually suffices for this particular musical form. Talent is never an issue with this band, but discipline certainly is.
An afterthought: it’s abundantly clear that Starring Janet Leigh’s band name is clearly an expression of admiration for the Hitchcockian oeuvre, but this writer can’t help but wonder how awesome it would be if they eschewed the tired horror film clichés and admitted drawing inspiration from Little Women instead of Psycho.