Musically tight, sonically adventurous, and curiously artsy, Billy Stark Stone and Rico Blythe challenge punk and alternative rock’s surrounding parameters. First and foremost though, Billy Stark Stone and Rico Blythe are a great rock ‘n’ roll unit in the traditional, or any other sense you would like to describe them in. Billy was the lead singer/founding member of NYC’s first and original seminal and notorious teen ‘punk’ band The Blessed. Rico was the guitarist in a later incarnation of the same band that resulted in the release of an EP titled ‘Taboo’ which sold out its initial run. Now Billy and Rico have teamed up to create a new exciting new enterprise, and they have just re-released a re-mastered version of the track ‘Potters Field’ taken from the Taboo EP.
There are bands who make records you love, and which enrich your life or expand your vision and your mindset, which open you up to new ways of thinking or feeling. If you’ve ever had a passing acquaintance with the music of Billy Stark Stone and Rico Blythe, it’s pretty much a given fact that they will fall into this category. Vocals, guitar, bass, drums; bare bones alt rock.
There’s nothing else to it, no tricks or twists, nothing. This is music raw and natural. Simply put, what you can expect to hear on ‘Potters Field’ is some well-formed, ass-kicking rock that everyone can enjoy. This track is not only perfect for jamming out by yourself or to blast at parties. The lyrics, ethic, and musical talent create a force that tears slits through the veil of current pop culture, allowing a brilliant light to emerge through the ignorance.
It is an important melting pot for the entire genre of alternative rock. The production on this track can be looked at two ways, depending on what you look for in alt-rock. First things first, the production is nice and clean, though dirty enough on the guitars to be rock, but audible enough to be enjoyed by any one.
You can see this as making it perfect to jam to and enjoy or you can see it as holding the single back from becoming too abrasive. However you look at it though, you cannot fault the production. The vocals are up front in the mix and audible, so that you can fully appreciate Billy Stark Stone’s vocal delivery which is top-notch.
The guitar hook by Rico Blythe, on the other hand, is decidedly catchy and grabs your attention 22 seconds into the song and never let’s go after that. As well as being intentionally attention grabbing, this little stunt also showcases how tight the group’s musicianship is.
Basically, Billy Stark Stone and Rico Blythe sits your mind down in a chair for 4 minutes and 33 seconds, opens your eyes, and provides a musical consistency that conveys their message of immediacy. The re-mastered version of ‘Potters Field’ has a very balanced sound rounded out by a thick bass and a thumping drum kit.
Throughout the track, it is evident that the creativity devoted to the vibration of each string or intensity of each beat is concentrated on blending the sound rather than having a single instrument stand out. But it’s really hard to hold back Rico Blythe’s guitar lines, which jump out at you everywhere in the mix. Overall, the whole thing leaves a dramatic impression upon the listener, while maintaining a striking atmosphere.