Million $ Reload – A Sinner’s Saint
(2012, Frontiers Records)
1. Fight The System … 3:20
2. Bullets In The Sky … 4:40
3. Blow Me Away … 3:53
4. Can’t Tie Me Down … 3:48
5. Broken … 5:55
6. I Am The Rapture … 4:53
7. Wicked … 4:13
8. Smoke ‘N Mirrors … 4:28
9. Headrush … 3:36
10. Pretty People … 4:46
11. It Ain’t Over … 3:50
Phil Conlon – Lead Vocals
Andy Mackle – Guitars
Brian Mallon – Guitars
Kie McMurray – Bass
Sean McKernan – Drums
Producer: Neal Calderwood
I had heard good things about these Belfast rockers in the past. Their debut album Anthems of A Degeneration was released in 2008 but it wasn’t until 2010 when that debut was reissued that the band got on my radar. With shame I admit that Anthems of a Degeneration has remained on my Amazon wishlist ever since but at least I have been able to check out their sophomore effort A Sinner’s Saint.
Million Dollar Reload (or Million $ Reload, if you prefer) are a straight-ahead, balls out rock band. Their sound is built upon foundation of blues-influenced classic hard rock acts such as Aerosmith and AC/DC. They also have been influenced by sleaze rock. I think the best comparison would be Buckcherry. Both bands have some great crunchy sleazy AC/DC & GNR moments but both bands have the ability to add some melodic moments as well. Million $ Reload tends be more loud, in your face and stripped-down overall though. In that regard, this band also reminds me of Dirty Looks because other than “Broken” they just don’t let up with their own brand of catchy hooks and dirty bluesy sleaze. All of this while not sounding like a retro band that just stepped out of a hot tub time machine!
“Bullets In The Sky” is my favorite track. Stars off sounding like AC/DC then it turns into this great anti-war anthem: “I’ve seen your blood red war/I would do anything/I would give anything/To stop those bullets in the sky”. Good to see these guys have a bit of a conscience and aren’t just totally here to party. Another standout is the ballad “Broken”. Another fine example of melodic abilities this band possesses. It’s crazy how good these guys are. They should be out on tours with Buckcherry, Papa Roach, Guns ‘N Roses, KISS and Motley Crue.
M$R are a band you don’t want to miss out on. If you’re a fan of any of the bands I’ve already mentioned, give these guys a shot. A Sinner’s Saint is one of the better releases of the year from one of rock’s most promising young bands.
Highlights: “Bullets In The Sky”, “Blow Me Away”, “Broken”, “I Am The Rapture”, “Smoke N’ Mirrors”, “Pretty People”
Crazy Lixx – Riot Avenue
(2012, Frontiers Records)
1. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot … 3:42
2. Young Blood … 3:47
3. Riot Avenue … 3:58
4. Fire It Up … 3:49
5. Downtown … 5:18
6. In The Night … 4:27
7. Church Of Rock … 4:04
8. Heatseeker … 3:01
9. Sweet, Bad & Beautiful … 3:47
10. Be Gone … 3:38
11. Only The Dead Know … 6:19
Danny Rexon – Vocals
Andy Dawson – Guitar
Edd Liam – Guitar
Loke Rivano – Bass
Joel Cirera – Drums
Sweden’s Crazy Lixx have returned with their third album Riot Avenue. I’ve never heard their Loud Minority debut but I think it’s safe to say this band is getting better with each release. 2010’s New Religion was a good album that’s worth listening to but ultimately it did not have a lasting impact on me. Riot Avenue is a different story. As good as New Religion was, the songs on Riot Avenue are much stronger as the band continues to draw influences from the likes of Def Leppard, KISS, Buckcherry, AC/DC and Motley Crue.
I feel like the band is taking baby steps to not be as cheesy as a lot of the ’80s influenced bands are. Yes, these guys obviously are inspired by that decade of excess and will appeal to fans of that same era but I detect a slight gritty edge this time around as the band becomes less Def Leppard and more Buckcherry. It’s not a major change of direction from New Religion but I think it’s worth noting and they’ve certainly gotten a bit heavier as they’ve added a second guitarist. The AC/DC influence seems somewhat new but it’s apparent on “Downtown”.
“Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” (WTF?) is the perfect opener. Fun, ballsy rocker that kicks things off right. I’m having trouble deciding whether that or “Church Of Rock” is my favorite track. Nipping at the heels of those two songs are the album’s closing track — the ballad “Only The Dead Know”. The rest is high energy rock ‘n’ roll that is sure to please all hard rockers that have a taste for glam, sleaze and pop metal.
It seems standard from Frontier Records these days but the production is great. I love all the backing vocals going on here and Danny Rexon does a great on lead vocals.
While New Religion proved to me that Crazy Lixx are a good band, it’s Riot Avenue that is beginning to cement the band’s reputation as one of the best melodic hard rock groups on the scene today. Riot Avenue is one of the year’s highlights so far for sure.
Highlights: “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot”, “Riot Avenue”, “Church Of Rock”, “Heatseeker”, “Sweet, Bad & Beautiful”, “Only The Dead Know”
(2012, Eonian Records)
1. Shootin’ Whiskey … 3:36
2. Gypsy Queen … 3:23
3. Take Me Down … 5:10
4. Mudbone Delight … 4:08
5. Jump On Me … 4:12
6. Never Say Goodbye … 4:26
7. Rattleshake Boogie … 3:14
Don McBee – Lead Vocals
Ralph Longo – Guitars, Backing Vocals
Mark ‘Freeze’ Freseman – Guitars, Backing Vocals
Bryan ‘Coach’ Lujan – Bass, Backing Vocals
Steve Fletcher – Drums, Backing Vocals
Producer: Rob Beaton & Rattleshake
San Francisco’s Rattleshake was an active hard rock band during the late ’80s. Though the band had the pleasure of opening for acts such as Tesla, Warrant & Winger, with the hair metal scene waning and grunge rising up, Rattleshake’s fate was sealed before ever getting signed. At least they were able to record a handful of tracks that, up until now, were unreleased. The sessions were co-produced with Rob Beaton (who has gone on to do studio work for GNR, Sammy Hagar, Santana, etc.)
This is a pretty cool collection of late ’80s hard rock. It’s not glammed out or polished like so many acts of that era became. Rattleshake has a bluesy & sleazy swagger to them that should appeal to fans of Ratt, Great White, Guns N’ Roses (I mention this because Don McBee sounds a lot like Axl at times) and Babylon A.D.
The two biggest highlights on this 7-track release for me are “Gypsy Queen” and “Take Me Down”. “Gypsy Queen” is a balls-out rocker that should’ve been enough to grab any label’s attention if not for poor timing and “Take Me Down” sounds like a lost Great White classic.
“Mudbone Delight”, “Shootin’ Whiskey” & “Jump On It” are three other ready rockers that show Rattleshake could bring the goods. Of course, what hard rock band during that era of hairspray could resist recording a ballad? Check out “Never Say Goodbye” for Rattleshake’s soft side. “Rattleshake Boogie” is just what it sounds like. A fun number to close the album with.
If you’re into seeking out quality bands that should’ve had more success, Rattleshake is another good find.
Highlights: “Gypsy Queen”, “Take Me Down”, “Mudbone Delight”, “Jump On Me”
I reviewed the single last month, now check out the awesome video for it!
Wildstreet – Easy Does It (2012, self-released)
1. “Easy Does It” … 3:25
Eric Jayk – Lead Vocals, Guitar
Ian MacPherson – Lead Guitar, Vocals
Aaron Joos – Guitar, Vocals
Ali Hassan – Bass, Vocals
Brian Beck – Drums
“Easy Does It” is the new single from modern glam/sleaze rock ‘n’ rollers Wildstreet (set to be released through iTunes on January 24th). Though a Wildstreet III album is a ways off, the band wanted to give the people a taste of what’s in store once that third release does arrive.
I came across this band years ago while browsing Retrospective Records’ site and ordered the debut from there and loved it. The first album was very much inspired by the slick glam metal and Def Leppard sounds. The Wildstreet II E.P. was a bit of a departure that went for a more sleazy & raw sound that was influenced by AC/DC and High ‘n’ Dry.
“Easy Does It” continues Wildstreet’s path down the road of straight up no-frills rock ‘n’ roll. It’s easier to compare the song to Wildstreet II but as much as I liked that E.P., I think “Easy Does It” is even better and it gets me excited for the third release as the band continues to find their own rock ‘n’ roll identity.
If you’ve missed out on this band, track down their first two releases. You won’t be disappointed. Then, make your way to iTunes on 1/24/12 and purchase “Easy Does It” and watch out for the “Easy Does It” music video that will be premiering on January 30th.
2012 is shaping up to be another spectacular year for rock music. This is a year that is going to see releases from KISS, Judas Priest, Aerosmith, Van Halen and Black Sabbath. WHAT YEAR IS THIS ?!?
In no particular order, here’s what I’m definitely picking up in 2o12:
Accept – Stalingrad (April)
Accept really blew me away with Blood of the Nations. The band has proven there is life without Udo. In fact, I think many people would prefer the current line-up over the classic Accept roster at this point.
Crazy Lixx – Riot Avenue (April)
These solid modern glam-metallers are currently in the studio working on their 3rd album.
KISS – Monster (Spring)
Obviously, this is the album I’m looking forward to most. Sonic Boom was a triumphant return to the studio for these guys, now that the wheels are well-oiled, I think Monster has potential to be even better.
Sunstorm – Emotional Fire (February)
I missed out on the last Sunstorm despite good reviews. In the past year I’ve come to appreciate AOR/melodic rock more so I think I’m going to try out this Joe Lynn Turner-fronted side project when it’s released.
No date yet set by these sleaze rockers but they are supposedly in the writing process now. I’m guessing sometime in the Fall.
Black Sabbath (Fall/Winter)
Another highly anticipated album for me because I’m really curious what it’s going to sound like. I’m not a big Ozzy fan, either as a solo artist or in Sabbath. I’d much rather see Iommi w/ Geezer go on to new projects (Iommi needs to give Tony Martin another call) but I still will be pre-ordering this one. My expectations aren’t all that high though given who is singing. I feel like he and Sharon are going to bring everyone else down to his mediocre level. Still, it’s exciting to know that new Iommi riffs and solos are coming.
So much prima donna drama in this camp over the last 5 years or so but hopefully that’s gone long enough to give us a new album. Granted, I don’t really expect much from these guys in terms of, well… anything anymore. They’re kind of a joke at this point but with the legendary Jack Douglas back on as producer, I have no doubts that he’ll drag something out of them that’s better than the last studio album (2001’s Just Push Play).
Van Halen (February 7)
Geez, it was starting to look like the new Chinese Democracy, wasn’t it? No album title has been released yet but a release date has been and the first single will be released on January 10. Van Halen is another band that has become a joke over the years (despite the last tour getting rave reviews) but I have a good feeling about this album. The first album with Roth since 1984 and 1984! Rumored titles have been The Future and 2012 but I don’t think either will turn out to be true. Maybe IV though..?
The band hasn’t definitely said a new album is coming in 2012 but they’ve been working on new material for a while now and seem to be looking at 2012 for releasing it. It’s a different songwriting dynamic now though. Instead of Halford/Downing/Tipton, it’s just Halford/Tipton. By all accounts, new guitarist Richie Faulkner is carrying his weight in a live setting so I think the album is going to turn out quite good. I do think it’s time the band delivers a straight ahead metal album though. Angel of Retribution and Nostradamus were good but not excellent. The band really hasn’t given the world that kick-ass classic metal album that they should’ve already done since Halford has come back. They really need a Painkiller, Hell Bent for Leather or British Steel at this point and keep it simple.
Primal Fear – Unbreakable (late January)
I have heard this album. It’s good. Plan on reviewing it soon.
Mollo/Martin – The Third Cage (late January)
See above. It’s great to have a new album out with Tony Martin on vocals.
Maybe wishful thinking on my part but they were working on new material this past summer so hopefully something new will appear by next summer.
The Last Vegas – The Other Side
No date announced yet but they recently released the free digital Other Side E.P. so I’d imagine we’ll have the new album by the spring.
His first solo album was one of the best records from the last few years and this time, Myles Kennedy is singing all the songs. Everything is written, all that’s left to do is record the songs so I’m guessing spring for this one as well.
Trans-Siberian Orchestra – Romanov: What Kings Must Whisper
The second non-holiday from TSO, it was actually planned to be their first album way back in 1994 but they held on it while trying to get a Broadway musical out of it first. Night Castle was dark and cool while still keeping that trademark blend of metal, rock and classical music, I expect more of the same here.
With a deal in place with Frontiers Records for the new album, I’m expecting something special despite never being a huge Dokken fan. Lightning Strikes Again was good enough for me to be interested in a follow-up. The plan, as of this past November, was to have recording completed by February.
This album was actually delayed from this past year in favor of recording and releasing the excellent The Covering album of cover songs. According to Michael Sweet, two albums are in the works: the first will be an album of re-recordings (Why? Can we stop this trend, please?) followed by an album of all-new material written in the same heavy, edgy vein as “God” from The Covering.
M-Pire of Evil
M-Pire of Evil is the renamed Primevil which itself was the reunited late ’80s/early ’90s line-up of Venom that featured Tony “Demolition Man” Dolan on vocals/bass . I’m not well-versed on the comings and goings of the Venom roster but the “classic” line-up is split into two different bands right now. Conrad “Cronos” Lant is leading Venom with a few newer guys while the other two “classic” members (Jeff “Mantas” Dunn & Anthony “Abaddon” Bray) have hooked up again with Dolan for M-Pire of Evil.
They released an EP this past summer called The Creatures of the Black, which was pretty good and I liked the Prime Evil album (the only Venom release I’ve heard from this line-up) so I’m looking forward to a full length album. I couldn’t find anything resembling a release date but going by the band’s Facebook page, it should be soon because they’ve been teasing releasing the album cover.
Tooth And Nail (March)
The band that features 3/4 of the classic Dokken line-up. How does “Wild” Mick Brown still retain a position in Dokken while joining Tooth And Nail? Given Don Dokken’s reputation, you’d think he’d have been fired from Dokken by now. I mean, this band was named after a Dokken album and they’ve gloated over the fact that Don Dokken isn’t in the group (bassist Jeff Pilson will handle vocals). What’s weird is that on the band’s Facebook page, they list current Whitesnake drummer Brian Tichy as a member as well… I guess he’s there for the live shows in case Brown has to go off and play in Dokken?
I’m probably forgetting a few more albums but oh well!
Posted in Uncategorized
Tags: Accept, Aerosmith, AOR, Black Sabbath, Buckcherry, Classic Metal, Classic Rock, Classical Music, Crashdiet, Crazy Lixx, Dario Mollo, Dokken, Don Dokken, George Lynch, Glam Metal, Glam Rock, Hair Metal, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, Joe Lynn Turner, Judas Priest, KISS, M-Pire of Evil, Melodic Hard Rock, Melodic Rock, Metal, Mollo/Martin, Music, NWOBHM, Pop Metal, Power Metal, Primal Fear, Progressive Metal, Progressive Rock, Rock, Slash, Sleaze Metal, Sleaze Rock, Stryper, Sunstorm, Tony Martin, Tooth And Nail, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, TSO, Van Halen
Last year I said 2010 was a better year for music than 2009 was. I went on to wonder how 2011 could even begin to top it. Well, guess what… 2011 did indeed top 2010! I’m looking back at my Top 25 list for 2010 and while those albums are all still good, this year’s Top 25 list is much stronger top to bottom.
2011 was a great year that saw classic rock/metal acts like Whitesnake, Warrant, Riot, Alice Cooper, Journey, Black N’ Blue and King Kobra deliver some of the best albums of their career while younger acts like Steel Panther, Reckless Love, Savage Messiah, Evile (who missed the list by this much) and Black Veil Brides have shown that they are more than capable of carrying rock & metal into the future.
Top 25 Albums of 2011
1. Whitesnake – Forevermore
2. Sixx:A.M. – This Is Gonna Hurt
3. Riot – Immortal Soul
4. Warrant – Rockaholic
5. Alice Cooper – Welcome 2 My Nightmare
6. Steel Panther – Balls Out
7. Megadeth – Thirteen
8. Anthrax – Worship Music
9. Sebastian Bach – Kicking & Screaming
10. Reckless Love – Animal Attraction
11. Edguy – Age of the Joker
12. Hurtsmile – s/t
13. Journey – Eclipse
14. Chickenfoot – III
15. Mike Tramp & The Rock ‘N’ Roll Circuz – Stand Your Ground
16. Black Country Communion – 2
17. The Poodles – Performocracy
18. House of Lords – Big Money
19. King Kobra – s/t
20. Saliva – Under Your Skin
21. Foo Fighters – Wasting Light
22. Black N’ Blue – Hell Yeah!
22. Savage Messiah – Plague of Conscience
24. George Lynch – Kill All Control
25. Joe Bonamassa – Dust Bowl
In light of a few non-album singles being released this year, I’ve decided to make this a hybrid category.
Best Compilation/Cover/Live/Reissue Albums
Kind of a catch-all category this year. Instead of listing each category individually, I decided to lump them all into one list and rank them that way.
1. Black Sabbath – Born Again [Deluxe Edition]
2. Stryper – The Covering
3. Vains of Jenna – Reverse Tripped
4. Whitesnake – Live at Donington 1990
5. Slash featuring Myles Kennedy – Live: Made In Stoke 24/7/11
6. Hell – Human Remains
7. Scorpions – Comeblack
8. Def Leppard – Mirrorball: Live & More
9. Eric Carr – Unfinished Business
10. Black Sabbath – Dehumanizer [Deluxe Edition]
Want to read more about the year in music? Check out some of the fine sites & blogs listed below! And be sure to keep checking back for more Year-End posts here at Metal Excess!
All Metal Resource — http://allmetalresource.com/
Bring Back Glam — http://bringbackglam.squarespace.com/
The Crash Pad of Ray Van Horn, Jr. – http://www.rayvanhornjr2.blogspot.com/
Hair Metal Mansion — http://hairbangersradio.ning.com/
Hard Rock Hideout — http://hardrockhideout.com/
Hard Rock Nights — http://hardrocknights.com
Heavy Metal Addiction — http://heavymetaladdiction.com/
Heavy Metal Time Machine — http://metalmark.blogspot.com/
Imagine Echoes — http://www.imagineechoes.com/
Layla’s Classic Rock — http://laylasclassicrock.blogspot.com/
Metal Odyssey — http://metalodyssey.wordpress.com/
The Ripple Effect — http://www.ripplemusic.blogspot.com/
Posted in Year End Awards
Tags: Alice Cooper, Alternative Metal, Alternative Rock, Anthrax, AOR, Black 'n Blue, Black Country Communion, Black Sabbath, Black Veil Brides, Blues Rock, Chickenfoot, Classic Metal, Classic Rock, Def Leppard, Edguy, Eric Carr, Foo Fighters, George Lynch, Glam Metal, Glam Rock, Hair Metal, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal, Hell, House of Lords, Hurtsmile, Ian Gillan, Joe Bonamassa, Journey, King Kobra, KISS, Megadeth, Melodic Hard Rock, Melodic Rock, Metal, Metalcore, Mike Tramp, Music, Myles Kennedy, NWOBHM, Pop Metal, Power Metal, Reckless Love, Riot, Rock, Saliva, Savage Messiah, Scorpions, Sebastian Bach, Sixx:A.M., Slash, Sleaze Metal, Sleaze Rock, Speed Metal, Steel Panther, Stryper, The Last Vegas, The Poodles, Thrash Metal, Tony Iommi, Vains of Jenna, Warrant, White Lion, Whitesnake, Who Cares, Wildstreet
The Last Vegas – The Other Side E.P. (2011, Electric City Entertainment)
1. “It Ain’t Easy” … 4:08
2. “Other Side” … 3:05
3. “Evil Eyes” … 4:16
Chad Cherry – Vocals
Adam Arling – Guitar
Johnny Wator – Guitar
Danny Smash – Bass
Nathan Arling – Drums
Producer: Johnny K
In preparation for The Other Side, a full-length album coming in early 2012, The Last Vegas have released The Other Side E.P., which is free to download from thelastvegas.com.
If you’re familiar with The Last Vegas and like them then this E.P. is for you. All three songs still have that garage meets glam meets sleaze sound The Last Vegas have always had. There’s nothing here with the urgency of “I’m Bad” (“Other Side” is the single) but I like all three songs so I’m positive once The Other Side LP is released it will be another solid album from these Chicago rockers. I’m still waiting for a Last Vegas album to really knock my socks off but in the meantime their albums have been FUN and that’s what really counts, right? I’ll bet they’re a great live band.
For those of you that want/need a little something more than just 3 MP3 files, you can head on over to CMDistro.com and order yourself the E.P. bundle which includes: the E.P. on CD, a t-shirt & poster all for $20. Cool deal and it’s pretty cool of the band to put out this EP for free in digital format too. Hopefully it’ll build a buzz for the band before the proper album comes out because they really are a good band and deserve the recognition.
Unfortunately, it appears the guys are no longer on the Eleven Seven label (home of Motley Crue, Sixx:AM, Buckcherry and Papa Roach). Which is sad because I was hoping label president Nikki Sixx would continue to flex his muscles to get these guys on some good tours and it’s to my understanding that the “I’m Bad” single did very well on iTunes. I think Eleven Seven dropped the ball on this one.
At least they have a successful producer working with them on this new album. Johnny K most recently produced Megadeth’s Thirteen but has also produced for Disturbed, Staind, 3 Doors Down, Black Tide, Sevendust and Bad City’s excellent Welcome to the Wasteland.
So there ya go. New music from The Last Vegas — check it out for free or spend $20 to get some cool merch as well.
Vamp Le Stat – Bloodline [Limited Edition] (2010, XXX Records America)
Original Release: 1993
1. “Madame Blue”
2. “Swing Child”
4. “She’s Not In Love Anymore”
5. “Guns 4 Hire”
6. “Chain Around My Heart”
7. “Madame Blue” [Studio reference mix]
8. “Swing Child” [Studio reference mix]
9. “She’s Not In Love Anymore” [Studio reference mix]
10. “Guns 4 Hire” [Studio reference mix]
11. “Chain Around My Heart” [Studio reference mix]
Jimmy Tuttle – Lead Vocals, Guitar
Jeff Jones – Guitar, Backing Vocals
Brian Boozer – Bass, Keyboards, Backing Vocals
Bret Blackburn – Drums
Producer: Jeff Jones
Vamp Le Stat is a L.A. glam band that got their start in the early ’90s. In 1992, Jeff Jones (you can read my review of his RockHard ’86-’96 compilation here) joined the band and that is when they recorded and released the extremely limited pressing of 2,000 copies for Bloodline. According to XXX’s website, the full title of this album is Bloodline: Rites of Passage but I don’t see the subtitle anywhere on the CD or the packaging. Apparently, there is a loose concept to this album as it deals with a vampire stripper named Suzie. The story continued in 1994’s Bloodline 2: Thrill Of the Kill which I have not heard yet and was just finally released to the public in 2010.
Although Jimmy Tuttle is not the best vocalist his voice suits the sound of the band. Speaking of that sound, I don’t want anyone thinking they are a slick glam act like Poison or anything. There’s a bit more street cred to their sound. Vamp Le Stat comes across as a really solid rock band you might expect to hear playing in a bar or strip club. It’s a trashy bluesy glam sound, something a bit more raw than the popular commercial glam acts of the day and the only band that comes to mind for comparison is Babylon A.D.
All of the studio mixes are bonus tracks and were not a part of the original issue. I don’t have the best trained ear when it comes to telling the difference between certain mixes and with remastered albums There are some differences I’ve been able to pick up and have found myself enjoying the studio mix of “Swing Child” better than the original version. Still, it’s always nice to have some additional tracks whenever possible.
Cutting the album down to its core, there are six songs here. 5 of which stick out in their own way (“Guns 4 Hire” is a fast paced rocker but doesn’t really work for me). “Madame Blue” starts off with a bit of atmosphere and keyboards setting up the album’s concept before the guitars kick in and set forth with a trashed up bar band stomp. “Swing Child” is another good bar room rocker. “Bitch” is the song with the most groove and how can you not want to sing along to “baby, you’re a biiiiiiiiitch”? Next up is the ballad “She’s Not In Love Anymore”. It’s a good ballad but this is where Tuttle seems to suffer a bit on the vocals. I just don’t think ballads are his strong suit, he’s better off singing trashy rockers. “Guns 4 Hire” features some impressive guitar work from Jeff Jones but as a song it’s just kinda there. “Chain Around My Heart” closes out the original album is again starts off with some atmospheric keyboard work and transitions well into a dirty rocker.
Hardcore glam fans will dig checking out this obscure release.
Highlights: “Madame Blue”, “Bitch”, “She’s Not In Love Anymore”, “Chain Around My Heart”, “Swing Child” [studio reference mix]
Crashdiet – Generation Wild (2011, Frontiers Records)
Original Release: 2010, Universal Music/Gain Records)
1. “442” … 0:54
2. “Armageddon” … 4:06
3. “So Alive” … 4:13
4. “Generation Wild” … 4:05
5. “Rebel” … 3:23
6. “Save Her” … 3:26
7. “Down With the Dust” … 2:47
8. “Native Nature” … 4:39
9. “Chemical” … 4:17
10. “Bound to Fall” … 4:16
11. “Beautiful Pain” … 4:42
Simon Cruz – Vocals
Martin Sweet – Guitar
Peter London – Bass
Eric Young – Drums
Producer: Johan Ramström and Patrik Magnusson
Crashdiet (or Crashdïet, if you prefer) are yet another glam/sleaze act from the country seems to have an unlimited supply of them — Sweden. Seriously, I bet you can’t drive down the road in that country without running over of these bands. I’ve heard and liked number of Crashdiet’s previous songs like “Riot In Everyone” and “It’s A Miracle” but for some reason I never got around to picking up an album. I’m sure high import prices are what kept my curiosity at bay. Generation Wild is their third release and also debuts their third vocalist — Simon Cruz. Cruz replaced Olli Herman (who left Crashdiet in 2008 to devote more time to Reckless Love) who replaced Dave Lepard (who commited suicide in 2006).
Well, what we have here is a reissue of the band’s 2010 album that was originally issued by Universal/Gain Records. They have since signed with Frontiers Records and this re-release looks to consummate the new deal. Though there are some international pressings of the original release with extra tracks, from what I can tell the only addition on the Frontiers version is the “442” intro (Maybe a change in album art too?), so this reissue really is of no interest to anyone who already has the 2010 release, BUT… with Frontiers’ wider distribution, this album should be easier to come by for North American listeners and should most definitely be picked up.
By this time, most people should know what to expect from the glam acts of Sweden: parts Def Leppard, Motley, Guns, KISS, Skid Row, etc. Some acts are more polished and AORish than others, some acts are sleazier than others. I like both sides of the fence and apparently Crashdiet does as well because they are straddling said fence. The gang vocals and harmonies are very reminiscent of Def Leppard but songs like “Armageddon” and “Generation Wild” have just enough bite. In fact, the whole album has enough bite that you don’t feel like you’re listening to cheese that expired in the 1980s. Like most bands that play that modern glam, Crashdiet are exactly that: modern.
From all accounts, Crashdiet is a success in their home country if you define “success” as having your album debut at #3 on the album charts and then getting your music video for “Generation Wild” banned on your country’s version of MTV! It’s a shame there’s not a huge market for these bands in America. In the meantime, I’ll continue to enjoy the music Crashdiet creates. If you’re into Hardcore Superstar, Wildstreet, Vains of Jenna, Dirty Penny, Crazy Lixx, Reckless Love, Jettblack and so on, this is an album and band you should not miss out on.
Highlights: “Armageddon”, “So Alive”, “Generation Wild”, “Save Her”, “Native Nature”, “Chemical”, “Beautiful Pain”