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How Sweet Cyanide is...

Southpaw - Brooklyn, NY, USA - January 15, 2009

by Sam Frank

Sweet CyanideMost of what we see today was spawned through the fusion of two or more separate objects. Fish with rice (sushi); Orange Juice with Vodka (screwdriver); Peanut Butter with Chocolate (reeses peanut butter cups); Ed Norton with computer graphics (The Hulk); and Shaquille O'Neal with Dwayne Wade (2006 NBA Champion Miami Heat) all prove that when two entities are combined, the finished product can reach greater heights than its individualized counterpart. New York based Sweet Cyanide is a rock outfit profiting off this ideology since it's the result of two bands, Crashbox and Moment Theory, that joined forces to become one super group. "We're not trying to reinvent the wheel here," confessed Sal Scoca, Sweet Cyanide vocalist/guitarist who also did vocals for Crashbox. "Just honest music delivered in a 45 minute live set that will kick you in the teeth," an accurate depiction of the condensed energy that explodes during Sweet Cyanide concerts. On stage; with his mischievous clan of droogs, drummer Mike Bambace (Moment Theory), guitarist Joe Salvatore (Moment Theory), bassist Angelo Fariello (Crashbox), and the captivating vocalist, Lindsay Benjamin, Sal embodies the essence of rock'n'roll stardom as his constant animation keeps the American flag cape around his neck airborne.

While the marriage of Crashbox and Moment Theory produced an invigorating live act the real treasure lies in the band's self-titled debut album. From beginning to end Sweet Cyanide is a musical blitzkrieg of super-charged guitar riffs, magnetic vocals, and pounding drum progressions; reminiscent of the days when rock music was worshipped by legions of fans who embraced its sociological observations and opinions, not just something downloaded because it sounds cool as a ringtone. "Crash Theory," gets the album underway in true head-banging fashion; melting Joe's guitar wizardry into Mike's barrage of intense beats ignites an adrenaline surge that remains throughout the album. Another standout track is the effervescent "Heartbreaker," a ball of loud angst that anybody whose ever been hurt by a spouse or loved one will enjoy. Showing his love for Queen, Sal breaks out the Kazoo on the "Certain Shadow On The Wall," a song laced with infectious harmonies and beautiful instrumentation. Fans of rock music owe Sweet Cyanide a debt of gratitude. Bands like this are what younger fans will listen to as they get older. Hopefully they will learn something and give my children music to bump to in high school that doesn't suck!