It's not thrash; it's not really heavy metal. But if you're interested in standard hard rock outing, you could do much worse than The Cursed. Room Full of Sinners is their debut. Dan Lorenzo, from Hades (the band, of course, not the grave) and Bobby Ellsworth of Overkill seem to be the major players for this outfit. If it's Overkill type thrash you're hoping for – well, just go get some old Overkill.
To be sure, the music is decent hard rock. Ellsworth produces brooding, evil vocals often reminiscent of Faster Pussycat or Jackyl – only without the maniacal humor. No, he more or less sounds like a lecherous old man; that does lend a certain creepiness to the trivial lyrics he's crooning. And, it fits well with the band's moniker.
The guitar work is good, the band definitely creates a groove on most of the tracks. Some shining moments come through on "Breaking Her Down" and "Serpentine Slither." Both have cool intro's; the latter song adds a touch of old big band swing which leads to visions of the band decked out in tuxedo's and top hats, throwing down a vaudeville show and then suddenly reverting to a rock and roll gig. It evokes a Spinal Tap-ish mockery of metal. "Queen of the Down" also has a great recurring riff, showing that the band can pack a punch when it chooses.
Ellsworth is still working with Overkill and Lorenzo has many of his own projects as well. The Cursed seems like a side project. None of the band members really seem to throw themselves into any of the tracks; subsequently, the songs go nowhere. There's a build up of heat and pressure, but never an eruption. The "been-there-done-that" feeling pervades. Nothing reaches out, sucks you in and leaves you wishing to hear more.
They've played one live gig, and according to the website it may also be their last. One has to wonder if the same is true of their debut album. Will this be it from The Cursed? Hopefully not. The band has the ability to take off; it would be nice to see them give the group another shot.