Review: Kris Barras Band – Death Valley Paradise
Mascot Records (March 4th, 2022)
Reviewer: Dan Mann
‘Death Valley Paradise‘ has been a highly anticipated release in this household, having been a Kris Barras fan for a few years now. But does it live up to expectations?
Well let’s start by saying Kris Barras and his merry men have embraced the dark side! Shifting much more towards the heavier end of the blues rock genre, this is more than fine by me, as it slots neatly into my own personal preferences, i.e. the dirtier end, more attitude, more power, more umph as it were.
A prime example of this torrent of energy is the first single off the album, ‘My Parade‘. F**k me, what a rip roaring, foot stomping and a barrel load of other descriptions slab of awesomeness.
And to think this isn’t the only highlight of ‘Death Valley Paradise‘. Oh no, not by a long shot.
The album has so many flavours threaded throughout it’s eleven tracks. From ‘Long Gone‘, with it’s more blues infused sound, building up in layers of a heavier sound as you reach the chorus. The more modern rock sound of ‘Wake Me Up When Its Over‘, the down and dirty ‘Cigarettes And Gasoline‘ or the album closer ‘Chaos‘ with it’s large soundscape.
The one thread that pervails throughout ‘Death Valley Paradise‘ is the energy of each chorus. This is a group of talented musicians giving it their all, understanding what’s needed once you raise your head above the parapet!
I cannot finish this here review without mentioning the superb production courtesy of Dan Weller, whose made this album’s sound just envelop you, then give you a damn good shaking into the bargain.
With Kris bringing in other songwriters (Jonny Andrews, Bob Marlette, Blair Daly and Zac Maloy) it’s helped create an album that’s leapt up several levels and if people aren’t fully aware of the Kris Barras Band, they soon will be.
Fabulous stuff indeed…