Friday, 24 October 2014

BILLY IDOL - Kings & Queens of the Underground (2014)

Genre - Hard Rock / Pop / Punk
Label - BFI Records via Kobalt Label Services
Track listing:
01 - Bitter Pill
02 - Can't Break Me Down
03 - Save Me Now
04 - One Breath Away
05 - Postcards From The Past
06 - Kings & Queens of the Underground
07 - Eyes Wide Shut
08 - Ghosts in My Guitar
09 - Nothing To Fear
10 - Love And Glory
11 - Whiskey and Pills
12. Hollywood Promise (Bonus Track)

Iconic '80s singer BILLY IDOL will release his first new album in almost a decade with "Kings & Queens of the Underground".
It's mostly produced by the legendary Trevor Horn, so you can expect a big, bombastic sound and a CD plenty of anthemic tracks.
At his 59, Billy Idol is still more than capable of making a very good album, just like this one, if he find the right people to work with. Trevor Horn was the man properly chosen, providing the bombastic sounds, the bubbling synths and those stabs of '80s sounding keyboards. Greg Kurstin was responsible for tweaking two tunes, and both have done a good job by giving the album a dynamic and energetic sound.
"Kings & Queens of the Underground" is a very easy-listening FM Rawk album and no different to the rest of Billy’s solo output.
And Billy has an 'ace': 'atomic playboy' Steve Stevens on guitar, and you are guaranteed of superb riffs and killer solos.
Musically, Stevens is the driving force on the record, which is great news.
"Kings & Queens of the Underground" rocks much more than I expected, and there's even space for acoustics and string arrangements on the title track, a semi-ballad where Billy revisits his past on the lyrics.
Of course there are no mega hits like 'Rebel yell' or 'White wedding' to expect, this is a much more mature record. We have 11 solid rock (at places bordering hard rock) songs on the album that are dominated by Idol's unique vocals and Stevens' screaming guitar.
The start with "Bitter pill" couldn't be better. Stevens' guitar rocks already from the beginning and Idol's throat are as we know it from him, the man is still in good form. A great driving song well chosen as opener for the album.
With "Can't Break me Down" it gets even better. A song with all Billy Idol trademarks, with a catchy chorus.
"Save Me Now" is a more silent tune that reminds with its melody to the Eighties. The sound gets more venturous with "One Breath Away". The sphereful tracks shows a new side from Billy Idol which fits very well.
A song that reminds to the good ol' times is "Postcards from the Past". I think that 'Rebel Yell' was the blueprint for this song. At least a lot of elements incl. Stevens excellent solo reminds me the THE Idol anthem. I love the track.
"Whiskey and Pills" is the hardest song on the album, a pounding speed train that mercy less kicks you out of the album. This song rocks.
If you thought that the good ol' Billy was finished, you are terribly wrong.
"Kings & Queens of the Underground" Rocks greatly, and it's among Idol's best records of his career. The songs are all entertaining, while production is shiny, pumpin', vital.
And we have Steve Stevens... what a genius.
Much, much better than I expected, "Kings & Queens of the Underground" is a very, very recommended new CD from the rustless Billy Idol.

Rating - 10/10

No comments:

Post a Comment