Thursday, 30 January 2014
Wednesday, 29 January 2014
Label - Frontiers Records
01 - Deceived
02 - Shout It Out
03 - Feeder (feat. Robin Zander)
04 - Fall From The Sky ~ Seagull
05 - Wasted (feat. Paul DiAnno)
06 - Slave
07 - Big Mouth (feat. Maria Brink)
08 - War Machine
09 - Redeem Me (feat. Sass Jordan)
10 - Exquisite Tenderness
11 - Feeder (Acoustic Version) [Japanese bonus track]
Guitar legend Jake E. Lee, the man behind Badlands and one of Ozzy Osbourne’s most famous albums, Bark At The Moon, is back after almost two decades out of the spotlight with his new band RED DRAGON CARTEL, and their self-titled debut to be released by Frontiers Records.
Clearly standing out from his countless contemporaries, Jake E. Lee first rose to international prominence as Ozzy Osbourne's sideman during the raucous '80s hard rock movement. Lee's signature guitar work and songwriting contributions on such million-selling albums as Bark At The Moon and The Ultimate Sin helped further to cement Osbourne's credibility during that decade, while Lee, himself, soared into the stratosphere as rock's latest guitar hero.
Following his tenure with Ozzy, Lee went on to create arguably his best and most compelling music in the late '80s and early '90s with the short-lived hard blues based outfit Badlands with short term former Black Sabbath vocalist ray Gillan. In recent years, the reclusive icon has resurfaced only occasionally appearing on various tribute records and solo releases.
In 2014, the famed guitarist returns with his new project, Red Dragon Cartel.
Recorded at the Hideout Recording Studio in Las Vegas, the self-titled debut from Red Dragon Cartel was produced by Lee and bassist Ronnie Mancuso (Beggars and Thieves), then mixed and mastered by Kevin Churko (Hinder, Ozzy). The band is completed with front man Darren James Smith and drummer Jonas Fairley.
However, the recording session was also gifted with some guest talent including singers Paul Di’Anno (ex-Iron Maiden), Robin Zander of Cheap Trick, as well as females Sass Jordan and Maria Brink (In This Moment), and Five Finger Death Punch’s Jeremy Spencer adding vocals.
And how do Red Dragon Cartel sound?
Simply put, pretty damn fine!
Red Dragon Cartel's sound is generally straight up melodic heavy rock with a modern tone, The music being driven by Lee's wall of riffage and wicked guitar solos. Additionally, underneath all this is some serious groove getting your toe tapping, while you're banging your head.
Perhaps the only Ozzy-like track on the disc is opener and lead single "Deceived" (a highlight), which possesses a no-holds-barred Bark At The Moon melodic energy. You really could imagine Ozzy singing the lead on this one! Paired together with "Shout It Out", these two hooky, guitar-driven groove monsters make for a powerful pair of openers. Plus Shout It Out has a real modern singalong feel to it that just makes it irresistible.
But even if the album revolves around Jake E. Lee’s endless talent, this is no guitarists solo album and it proves interesting to see how each of the guest artists are able to somehow slice off a bit of the Lee pie to showcase their wares. For instance, Zander on the track "Feeder" shines with an almost psychedelic feel and Maria Brink provides a Joan Jett-like moment that is a nice change up on "Big Mouth".
Haunting and melodic, "Fall From The Sky" is another stand-out, as is the bona fide pedal-to-the (old school) metal nugget "Wasted" featuring first Iron Maiden vocalist Paul Di’Anno.
"Fall From the Sky" is fantastic ballad with superb instrumentation, centred on a strummed guitar pattern while vocalist Smith shines and gives his most passionate performance.
Another power point, "War Machine", lies stylistically somewhere between classic Black Sabbath and modern metal. Additionally, Sass Jordan's guest vocal on "Redeem Me" helps it to stand out from the rest of the hard-hitting pack as a straight-up and gritty blues rocker - one that's fabulously reminiscent of Badlands.
However, Lee's most vicious and enticing riffs (possibly) ever are heard on "Slave", which is another highlight here. You can hear a terrific palm muted fast picked riff that blends into an atmospheric verse before slamming into a fist-pumping shout along chorus.
Red Dragon Cartel's self-titled debut record is an impressive amalgam of Lee’s past output mixed with a modern spin. Blues inspired killer riff driven hard rock with melodic vocals is still the blueprint that Jake Lee works too. Great musicianship, asce production and some cracking songs!
Very Highly Recommended.
Rating - 9/10
Label - Frontier Records / Soulfood
01 - King For A Day
02 - Rebel Faction
03 - When Death Comes Knocking
04 - Alive & On Fire
05 - Delivering The Black
06 - Road To Asylum
07 - One Night In December
08 - Never Pray For Justice
09 - Born With A Broken Heart
10 - Inseminoid
11 - Man Without Shadow (Bonus Track)
12 - When Death Comes Knocking (Single Edit) (Bonus Track)
13 - Born With A Broken Heart (Edit Version) (Bonus Track)
German metallers PRIMAL FEAR return with their 10th slab of metal, in the form of new album "Delivering The Black" to be released by Frontiers Records / Soulfood.
Bassist and co-founder Mat Sinner handles the production duties and delivers what is easily one of the band's most explosive records to date. Guitarists Magnus Karlsson and Alex Beyrodt are in simply phenomenal form, with sharp, resonating riffs and melodic spiraling solos throughout the entire album!
The production has been helped immensely by the the pairing of Jacob Hansen at the mixing with Achim Köhler mastering which along with the watchful of Mat Sinner overseeing the entire process as producer, has made this new album from Primal Fear somewhat more bombastic than ever.
Generally, the bands traditional sound has been magnificently maintained by Jacob Hansen - though a contemporary edge has been added, especially the modernized guitar sound, which really stands out on "Delivering The Black".
The album kicks off in blazing style with a barrage of crisp riffage and chugging rhythms on the album opener, “King for a Day”. Sinner's bass and Randy Black's drums are like a locomotive while the dual guitar leads soar and ensnare the listener. An anthemic hooky chorus and Scheeper's gritty vocal delivery seal the deal.
A dramatic intro sets the tone for “Rebel Faction” which quickly turns into a speedball of rapid-fire double bass and speed-riffing that will rattle teeth and vibrate bones.
This leads us into the album's debut single, “When Death Comes Knocking”: a blasting melodious piece which begins with an acoustic intro and a mid-tempo riff. Built for arenas, this beast has a massive feel to it and an undercurrent of Arabian nuances, particularly in the bridge. Scheepers’ performance gives the song an epic melodic feel.
The title cut as well as “Road to Asylum” are speeding juggernauts of pounding razor riffs and rhythms. Infectious melodies make them among the record's most memorable tracks.
The tolling of the bell and cawing birds lead into an emotive piano melody on the intro to the album's near ten-minute cinematic piece, “One Night in December”, which is, if I have it right in mind, the longest song Primal Fear ever released. The track has a sumptuous sound and orchestral elements, and a lot of variations and arching melodies which makes it really special.
You almost could say that a fierce album like this also needs a ballad. Sometimes these ballads are overloaded with cliche... but not in the case of Primal Fear. "Born with a Broken Heart" is a great song, an emotional ballad featuring Leaves Eyes' female vocalist Liv Kristine doing some fine backing vocals. Scheepers hits a poignant mark with his inspired delivery, and once again the guitars dance and spirit the song to new heights.
Closing out the album proper is the battering-ram rampage that is “Inseminoid”, propelled by Black's lightening quick feet and more fancy-fret axe-work by Beyrodt and Karlsson.
We then have the three bonus tracks, two edits of pre-existing album tracks and "Man Without Shadow", a great melodic rocker, that although a great track, doesn't really fit anywhere within the constraints of the album proper, and it is therefore understandable that it is used as a bonus track. Still a great song though!
"Delivering The Black" is easily Primal Fear's best all-around album in years, a really true return to form, packed with every bombastic element a metal / hard rock fan could hope for, "Delivering The Black" not only delivers - as the name suggests, it propels you into the centre of the arena, leather clad and head-banging.
A must have for any metal fan!
Rating - 10/10
01 - Is War the Answer?
02 - In Your Eyes
03 - Song for the Rain
04 - Your Own Misery
05 - Notorious
06 - Every Time I Die
07 - Strong Enough
08 - Welcome to My World
09 - Free Fall
10 - Once Again
#### This is Not My Review but I simply couldnt have put it any better therefore I have reproduced it here! All credit to the orignal reviewer and publisher! ####
Marko PAVIC and his self-named band from Italy released two interesting Hard Rock albums during the last decade, both quite well received but failed to make them an established act.
After some turmoils in the line-up and the departure of vocalist Chris Catena in 2010, PAVIC was put on hiatus but in early 2013 the band was revived with a new drummer and a new lead singer but mostly, a new dynamic, improved sound which is moving into a more straight and contemporary direction, as it's heard on they new CD "Is War The Answer?"
Since the first seconds of the opening, title track, you can hear the musical change: edgy, post-grunge Americanized modern hard rock with an anthemic feel, a quite promising start to this disc which introduces us to the very accessible and decent vocals of the heavily tattooed Joe Calabro.
Calabro is the perfect candidate for helping the band to uplift themselves with some vocals inflexions that can recall James Michael James (SIXX AM) or Chris Cornell (Soudgarden). The fresh, updated sound of Pavic is enhanced with some sharp riffing by Marko perfectly placed in a sound canvas courtesy of Rick Beato (Furyon) who engineered and mixed the whole recording at Black Dog Sound Studios, USA.
"In Your Eyes" flows in similar style, hard rocking Americana and, again, comes out on top, while "Free Fall" rocks with in a modern style with synths in the background and raspy vocals / melodic chorus upon a staccato riffage.
The ballad "Song For The Rain", although a tad modern radio friendly, is a stormer of a song which I'd rather listen too than half of the usual duff that gets played time over and again so it's another tick in the box.
"Your Own Misery" and "Strong Enough" stomps it up again with good mix between energetic down tuned guitars and more progressive elements. The faster they play, they more fluid they become – this is obviously where the band feels more comfortable and it's a winning combination that they've struck upon.
You want a band to take chances every now and again – sometimes it works, sometimes it's something the band will forever regret – so to stick Duran Duran's "Notorious" slap bang in the middle of this disc is a gamble. For me, this unexpected cover song is one of the highlights of the CD, the guitar work is highly skilled and the solo spot by Marko Pavik is short but impressive, something in coherency all along the disc.
On their new album "Is War The Answer?" Pavic tries to blend classic hard rock melodies with American mainstream, modern rock radio anthemic tunes, and they succeed for the most part.
I don't believe they will break up the charts with this 'new style', but this fresh CD it's a more than interesting recording fusing the best of both worlds, something appealing for many listeners. The production of Rick Beato is polished and powerful, really well balanced and with a crisp output.
"Is War The Answer?" is also worth to investigate for those curious minds who ask themselves how the Modern American Rock is digested in Europe, made and crafted by an European band.
Label - Habit Formed Records
01. I Got Sound
02. Find a Way
03. Leave My Heart
04. Line Me Up
05. Before the Matinee
06. Never Wrong
07. Falling Down
09. Swinging Brick
10. Knock It Away
11. Rain Water
Debut albums don't come along like this very often. Rock at its best, in your face but with a few subtleties thrown in. I Got Sound is a full on balls out old fashioned rock album, great guitar driven classic rock but with a very contemporary edge. Their bio says, Great Band, great songs, great fun, and to be honest you just can't disagree.
Just imagine John Mellencamp fronting Foo Fighters jamming with Cinderella and then you get a good idea of what Fireroad sound like.
Fireroad are a 4 piece rock band based in the South Wales. They were formed in 2012 by Richard Jones, the band’s lead singer and songwriter, the band is completed by Tim Jones, Gavin Davies and Matt Whitney.
Richard Jones, has a long history of performing within the local rock scene. In his youth he played with the Tragic Love Company, whom later evolved to become South Wales most well known band the Stereophonics. After leaving, he pursued other avenues whilst maintaining a close friendship with the Kelly Jones, Richard Jones and the late Stuart Cable.
I Got Sound is probably the perfect title for this album, because it sure does. Eleven excellent tracks, lovingly crafted together and brought to life by one hell of a band. The production here too is really top notch.
There isn't really a stand out track on here, but you really do have to check out Find A Way, I Got Sound, Line Me Up, Never Wrong and the beautiful Rain Water.
A truly outstanding debut
Rating - 10/10
Label - Zeta Factory / Believe
01 - Drawer Closer (Radio Edit)
Italian alternative metal five peice Klogr (pronounced Kay-log-are) release a brand new single, Drawer Closer, taken from their forthcoming secong album Black Snow, on February 2nd.
The song is a really neat piece of work, intense and heavy riffing combining together with some great prog rock leanings in places with a great use of melody throughout. If this is an indication of what the album holds in store then we should be in for a real treat.
Catch Klogr live as they provide support for the one and only Prong on their Uk Tour.