Life Of A Hero – Life Of A Hero
Battlegod Productions (November 12th 2022)
Reviewer: Jason Hopper
Life Of A Hero is the debut album from singer Russ Grimmett (son of Grim Reaper/Lionsheart singer Steve Grimmett) and he is backed by most of the musicians from one of my favorite newer bands, Midnite City. When you have the guitarist, bassist, and drummer of that band performing together here, expectations are that you will have a similar sound to that band. That is not the case with this release.
The album opens with ‘3D’, a straight forward driving rocker that is certainly enjoyable, but would have benefitted from some diversity with the chorus, which comes across as more suited for the bridge. With this opening track, we need to address the comparison issue. It is unfair to make a father/son juxtaposition as it is rare that a well known vocalist has offspring that can mimic the vocalizations and style they are known for. A good singer should stand on their own without relations getting in the way. Those that are expecting Russ to sound like his father are going to be disappointed. While Russ is certainly a capable singer and does a fine job with the material, he is not the powerhouse vocalist of his father. That being said, there are similarities in their vocal deliveries, which is evident on faster tracks like ‘Falling Apart’ and ‘Risk It All’, two great stand out tracks.
While I didn’t expect a Lionsheart-type sound, I was expecting a vibe similar to the band Midnite City, but there’s very little reminiscent of that. Tracks like ‘Letting Go’ and ‘Caught In A Lie’ have more of a melodic modern feel, similar to latter day Harem Scarem. Perhaps it is a coincidence that the album was mixed by Harry Hess, with him singing backing vocals on ‘In My Dreams’. This also happens to be my favorite track on the album. The background vocals really spice up the chorus and there’s some great shredding, especially the solo and outro of the song. The album could have benefitted from more of this throughout.
I would like to say based on the players that this is a must have album, but outside of a few tracks, I was not crazy about the songs. They are all done well and the production from drummer Pete Newdeck is on par with all the best material being released these days. I am admittedly not a big fan of down tuned melodic rock, so tracks like ‘Stay For A While’, ‘Shine A Light’, and ‘Don’t Waste My Time’ do not do much for me. There are more tracks in that fashion than in the ones I was expecting, given the players on this release. There are fans of this type of sound who will absolutely dig this album. Unfortunately, I am not one of them.