‘Written & Directed’ review: Black Honey come out all guns blazing on stomping second album

Photo: Laura Allard Fleischl

Izzy Bee Phillips has cemented her status as a leading lady in rock 'n' roll on Brighton outfit Black Honey's riveting second record.

On their 2018 self-titled LP, Phillips and co showed us mere snapshots of their capabilities, from bonafide pop-noir disco bops such as 'Midnight' and 'Bad Friends', to pulp fiction vignettes.

But much like the album's influencer Quentin Tarantino's movies, 'Written & Directed' has a clear-cut distinctive style; brash, bold, and in-your-face, short, sharp bursts of unapologetic rock, that jolts song-to-song like an action-packed James Bond movie.

Hooking you in from the start, ballsy opener 'I Like The Way You Die' - which was co-written with Carl Barat and The Prodigy's Olly Burden - is named after the quote 'I Like The Way You Die, Boy' from Tarantino's 'Django Unchained' and is oozing at the seams with swagger and empowerment.

Explosive 'Disinfect' - written pre-pandemic - is easily the heaviest Black Honey track; all guns blazing, it's like holding a mirror up to a world on the brink of collapse.

Black Honey have succeeded in making a defiant album that amplifies the female voice and takes back control with powerful assertions aplenty, such as "It's my body, I make the rules" on standout track 'Fire'.

Rating: 8/10

Release Date: 19.03.21