REVIEW: My Wicked Twin – 3 Engines (2020)

MY WICKED TWIN – 3 Engines (2020)

Like a bolt out of the blue, My Wicked Twin (Brent & Brian Doerner) have a new album out, their fourth, called 3 Engines.  A tight set with 10 songs in the 3-4 minute range, 3 Engines rocks.  Let’s have a listen.

“Gone Nomad”, the heavier than hell opener, is a tricky number that recalls Max Webster, but amped up.  “I’ve got a gun if we disagree,” sings Brent in an electronically treated voice, appropriate to the tune.  By the second track, “Light From Within”, we are in more traditional hard rock territory…until the corner bar piano kicks in!  Clearly nobody was afraid of taking chances.  The dark guitar hook is terrific on this one, as is the melodic bass.  Melody is also the focus of “Things I Wanna Do” a quirky modern sounding track with programmed beats and patches of keyboard.  Dig the engines revving!  “Give and Take” sounds like a natural followup, and it’s interesting to hear so much focus on the vocal melodies this time out.  Clearly a lot of effort went into them.

“Escaping California” has a dreamy quality, with spare use of keyboards that set the scene.  But it’s the following song, “House on the Highway”, that is the most fun.  Who doesn’t love a little banjo?  It adds variety and a little down-home quality and there’s nothing wrong with that.  “House on the Highway” for the win.

For heavy, you want “Digital Veins”.  The guitars and keys complement each other nicely.  “Rock and roll is what I am used to,” sings Brent, but he’s also not afraid to stretch out within those confines.  There’s a cool 80s vibe to “Digital Veins”.  Then “Half Broken” has an interesting rhythm to accompany the cool keys and guitars.  Killer solo here.  “Running Out of Time” has an accelerated pace but also some seriously tasty twang.  The album ends with “Brain Dance”, a cool party tune with a serious thump.  Wicked guitars, with varied tones and licks.

3 Engines is different, and that’s good.  The keyboards add an atmospheric tone, and it’s not dissimilar to old Max Webster.  The electronic treatment on the drums and vocals works, and complement the music.  My Wicked Twin have taken some leaps and bounds on this album, and ended up with some accomplished tunes.  Not for headbangin’.  3 Engines rocks, but it rocks smart.

4/5 stars

Additional musicians:

Paul Chapman – guitar solo on “Running Out of Time”
Jim Mclean – guitar and co-writer on “Light”
Rob Kemp – guitar on “Light”
Graham Smith – bass on “House” and “Light”

18 comments

  1. Modern techniques, electronic vocals, questionable lyrics and trying something different. Is that not similar to the new Ozzy album? He didn’t get a pass for being Ozzy. Did these guys get a slight bump for the Helix history?

    Now I need to get both of these and compare for myself.

    Like

      1. I know it is hard when the local heroes are chomping at the bit to read the review.
        Good on you for listening a bunch before the review. I am sure you wanted to bang it out right away.

        I will be getting this one. Glad to see the old school Kitchener rockers have still got it. Thanks for spreading the word.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I only buy physical music so I miss a lot.

          Even if bands only offer a limited edition run of cd, vinyl, cassette I usually try and buy it for the exclusivity.

          For me, I get excited about a new band(album), only to find they only have a digital release, and I forget them almost immediately. If they have a release, I buy it almost immediately. It is a huge difference that new bands(and old bands that think a.physical product is not needed) may not consider, but should.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. I played the new Ozzy a bit on the weekend and it’s definitely not as good as this. It sounds like there was no artist involved. This sounds like expression more than Ozzy did.

          As much as I hate non physical releases we might have to temporarily accept them for some months. And I’ll support the bands by paying for something I normally would not buy at all.

          Like

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