Review: Little Caesar – Eight
Golden Robot (March 16 2018)
Reviewer: Grant Foster
Right. Let’s get this out of the way first up.
There is absolutely no way that a band of this age, should be writing material this good. They sound like a band a couple of albums into their career. It’s fresh, groovy, soulful, rocking and makes you wanna dance, shout and sing.
Now I could just submit that to my editor, but I’d probably get my P45 before I got to press the ‘send’ button, so allow me to flesh it out a little.
Little Caesar, if you weren’t aware have been around since 1987, playing rock and roll with a subtle difference. That being their injection of soul and cool on the music we all know and love. A classic example being their take on ‘Chain Of Fools.’
But here they are still insisting on flying over to Europe to play in bars, clubs, dives, you name it, because, like a lot of bands these days, they still love what they do. But, not only that, LC are still releasing albums that count and have something to say in the musical landscape. F**k it that they might not be shifting multi platinum status. They want this. Badly.
Which brings me back to this fine opus.
’21 Again’ opens proceedings all muscle and menace and it feels like the band are 21. Again. The LC hook chorus rears it’s head straight away to reel you in.
‘Mama Tried’ ups the ante further, but always in a soulful, musical way. These guys have the tools to rock hard, but always with that soulful sing a long a swagger.
Have I mentioned Ron Young yet? A unique voice in rock for me. Part Bon Scott, part Aretha, all class. He hasn’t lost it and thank god for that.
‘Vegas’ has a classic hook – ‘too stoopid for New York, too ugly for Hollywood.’ And these boys should know!
‘Velvet’ has been in their live set for some time now. It’s a groover, lyrically evoking the ladies who refused to acknowledge that the days of the Sunset Strip were far behind them. You get the feeling that this is a personal tale.
Nobody loves a good time more than me and the guitar riff that opens ‘Good Times’ has it in spades. ‘Those are the days that we won’t let fade away’. Absolutely.
It wouldn’t be a LC album without a soulful lament and ‘Time Enough For That’ provides it. The guitar picking is subtle, yet highlights and accompanies Ron’s vocal. Sublime. They really do write this type of song that can reduce a hard man to rubble.
‘Straight Shooter’ is a hard edge rocker. It asks the question, ‘Is there anyone out there, that’ll look you right in the eye?’ No BS, just like this tune.
‘Another Fine Mess’. Nope, it’s not a homage to Laurel and Hardy (!), but a fine romp in the style of the Faces / Bachman Turner Overdrive type bar room brawling. All honk with an earworm of a chorus that won’t leave you alone.
‘Morning’ brings to mind an old roadie I used to work with. He used to walk off into the sunrise after an all night party, leather jacket slung over his shoulder, into the morning glow. ‘I can’t wait for the morning ’………yep Red would have loved this laid back sunshine of a song.
‘That’s Alright’ closes the album proper and it’s a little left field. A hint of Cheap Trick, a hint of Foo Fighters mixed with LC.
Two bonus tracks – ‘Mixed Signs’, a more laid back Louisiana sounding tune as Ron laments a woman who he can’t read properly. Ahem! Then a modern take on ‘Slow Ride’, a tune that initially appeared on the Influence album. However the boys play it, it’s still class.
Eight – I’d give it a 9 actually. Go get it.