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The Big Deal: First Bite
The Big Deal - First Bite Album Art

The Big Deal: First Bite

FFV Melodic Metal Rock
4.5/5.0

The Big Deal may be the one of few (of many) new bands to actually live up to their name. Coming from Serbia, the band was created by the husband and wife duo of Srdjan Brankovic (guitarist, composer, and producer) and his wife vocalist Nevena Brankovic, an accomplished pianist Nevena. Another local vocalist Ana Nikolic, a friend of Nevena, was recruited as a second singer. Frontier's Alessandro Del Vecchio plays bass, Marko Milojevic on drums. The latter played with Srdjan in the Serbian progressive metal band Alogia.

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The Big Deal

As most upstart bands do, The Big Deal began crafting some new songs for demos. In the meantime in 2021, during the COVID pandemic, the band released video covers of songs from Europe (Rock The Night), Nightwish (Amaranth), and ABBA (Gimmie! Gimmie! Gimmie!) Now the band launches their debut album on Frontiers Music, First Bite

With two female vocalists at the forefront, The Big Deal offers listeners a strong dose of classic melodic metal rock. The songs have an established pattern: solid song melody, guitar and vocal harmony, crisp assertive riffs, rhythm section groove, and terrific guitar solos. Without question the female vocals are satisfying, if not somewhat muted in the harder song. But, for this listener, I was most impressed by the music, notably the rhythm section and dastardly prolific guitar solos. I'm not entirely sure, after a spin or two, whether their songs rise to the caliber radio-friendly consistency (think: Journey's prolific record), but First Bite is definitely a pleasurable listen.

With eleven songs to consider, here are some favorites. Stronger rockers, both fast and heavy, come with Top Heaven, I Need You Here Tonight, and Never Say Never (delectable piano outro there). Power On nears power metal (or rock) machinations with its rabid riffs and blistering pace (with rock groove underneath). Wake The Fire blends steady heaviness with more subtle vocal part, then has a fine segue of synths over bass followed by a strong guitar solo in the second half. Something that may have more AOR-arena groove is the very catchy Rebel Lady. It's a fine rocker to boot.

All said, The Big Deal and their debut First Bite is indeed something of a "big deal." With its sharp songwriting and skilled musicianship, this female-fronted band delivers solid and entertaining melodic metal rock. Recommended.




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The Take Away

All said, The Big Deal and their debut First Bite is indeed something of a "big deal." With its sharp songwriting and skilled musicianship, this female-fronted band delivers solid and entertaining melodic metal rock. Recommended.

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