Review: The Wicked Jackals – About Time

(July 12th 2019)

Reviewer: Paul Saripo

The Wicked Jackals are an expressive four piece outfit creating full on rock from Watford .

I was keen to discover their newly released debut EP ‘About Time’ so I gave it a spin.

On first play the vocal literacy reminded me of some elements of Skunkworks, a Bruce Dickinson offshoot in ‘96’ I think it’s the vocal attack of Ollie Tindall that brought that to the forefront.

The rhythm section is driven by the firmly placed beats of James Norkett alongside the persistent bass of Lex Gifford and the versatile Marty Venus on guitars, Ollie Tindall takes up some lead guitar work and makes a great guitar duo between the both of them.

First track is ‘Ain’t Gonna Change’ this is quite punchy and grows quickly into a catchy rock anthem that will have up front.

Fortune’N’Glory’ follows with powerful intent, grungy riffs flowing lead guitars.

Third track starts with prominent lead vocals on the mix, it’s a bluesy sleaze metal number with some influence coming through from Rose Tattoo and a sprinkle of AC/DC.

Moving onto ‘Laying Down The Law’ I enjoyed the vocal tenacity of Ollie Tindall backed with solid riffs and buoyant solos

The EP finishes off with an up tempo song ‘Scream’ that is a closing presentation of what The Wicked Jackals has delivered on this EP.

When I first played the EP a couple of times I felt some of the tracks had been mixed differently to each other, particularly the vocal elements and I was distracted slightly, however I soon forgot about this initial thought as I found the EP has grown on me as it flows from track to track,  I hear energy and talent on this EP and will be keeping a look out for an opportunity to see them live.

 

 

The full line up for this year’s Gravity Festival has been announced.

Tickets are available Here

11 Bands will be rocking up and laying waste to the stage at, The Station, Cannock on the 19th October 2019.

Exclusive and the only 2019 show in England, Headliners Mason Hill will be showing what they’ve been up to with new songs and old favourites.

Also playing are Dead Man’s Whiskey, The Burning Crows, Collateral, Wicked Stone, Fugitive, 4th Labyrinth, False Hearts, Trident Waters, Mad Haven & Jesse’s Divide.

Special guest and MC for the day is Pete K Mally.
It’s all shaping up to be one hell of a party be sure not to miss it!

Doors are now 12.30pm music kicks off at 1pm.

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Multi-Award-winning American Blues guitarist and singer-songwriter Samantha Fish releases her new single ‘Bulletproof’ on Friday 12th July accompanied by a music video. The single is taken from her upcoming album ‘Kill Or Be Kind‘ – released on Friday 20th September on Rounder Records and distributed in the UK by Proper Music – which is now available for pre-order worldwide here – https://found.ee/SFBulletproofWhen pre-ordering the album, you receive ‘Bulletproof’ as a free MP3 download.

The genre-bending guitarist, singer, and songwriter will tour the UK in February and March 2020.

Fish’s incendiary live performances have been mesmerizing audiences all over the globe. Now, with ‘Kill Or Be Kind‘, Fish is poised for a major breakthrough. The edgy roots music album was recorded at Royal Studios in Memphis and produced by three-time Grammy winner Scott Billington and mixed by two-time Grammy winner Steve Reynolds. Boasting 11 original songs ranging from the electric cigar box stomp of “Bulletproof” to the sweet Memphis R&B of ‘Trying Not To Fall in Love With You‘, the album is sure to establish Fish as a potent force in roots music.

After launching her recording career in 2009, Samantha quickly established herself as a rising star in the contemporary blues world. Since then, the charismatic young singer-guitarist-songwriter has earned a reputation as a rising guitar hero and powerful live performer, while releasing a series of acclaimed albums that have shown her restless creative spirit consistently taking her in new and exciting musical directions.

The New York Times called Fish “an impressive blues guitarist who sings with sweet power” and “one of the genre’s most promising young talents.” Her hometown paper The Kansas City Star noted, “Samantha Fish has kicked down the door of the patriarchal blues club” and observed that the young artist “displays more imagination and creativity than some blues veterans exhibit over the course of their careers.”

As far as Samantha is concerned, her musical future is an open road. “I’m never gonna be a traditional blues artist, because that’s not who I am,” she asserts. “But it’s all the blues for me. When Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf came out, what they were doing didn’t sound like anything that had been done in blues before. You’ve gotta keep that kind of fire and spirit. I’m never going to do Muddy Waters better than Muddy Waters, so I have to be who I am and find my best voice.

Samantha Fish – February/March 2020 UK Tour

Tickets: www.alttickets.com, www.gigantic.com & Planet Rock

St Lukes, Glasgow Friday 28 February
Brudenell Social Club, Leeds Saturday 29 February
Rescue Rooms, Nottingham Sunday 1 March
Gorilla, Manchester Tuesday 3 March
The Globe, Cardiff Wednesday 4 March
Islington Assembly Hall, London Thursday 5 March
The Waterfront, Norwich Friday 6 March
Trinity, Bristol Saturday 7 March
Concorde, Brighton Sunday 8 March

Scarlet Rebels are thrilled to announce that their new album, ‘Show Your Colours‘, will be released on Fri 09 August 2019 via ROAR! Rock Of Angels Records. In celebration, the hard melodic rock quintet, release their first single, ‘No One Else To Blame‘, on Fri 15 July 2019.

No One Else To Blame‘ is available across all digital and streaming platforms.

The album, ‘Show Your Colours‘, will be available in Download, CD and limited edition Vinyl and can be pre-ordered now via the ScarletRebels.com  website.

No One Else To Blame‘ was produced and engineered by Tim Hamill (Girlschool, Lemmy, George Michael) and recorded at Sonic One Studios in Llanelli, South Wales.

Frontman, Wayne Doyle, said of the song, No One Else To Blame is the opening song on the new album and its an angry, guitar driven rant!

Is was written against the current backdrop of political uncertainty; particularly surrounding ‘Brexit’ and the blatant lies peddled by politicians to further their own agendas.

Whilst the UK becomes further divided between leavers and remainers, the people responsible point fingers at each other, with no one willing to take responsibility for the situation.”

Album Track Listing:

  1. No One Else To Blame
  2. You Take My Breath Away
  3. Head’s In The Ground
  4. Part Of Me
  5. Heal
  6. Let Your Love Go
  7. Nothing To Say
  8. Save Me
  9. Blinded By The Pain
  10. Shattered Dreams
  11. Can I Open My Eyes
  12. Returning Light
  13. Losing End (Bonus: Digital download/ streaming only)
  14. Radio Song (Bonus: Digital download/ streaming only

Line up:
Wayne Doyle (vocals/guitar)
Chris Jones (lead guitar)
Josh Townshend (guitar)
Wayne ‘Pricey’ Esmonde (bass)
Gary Doyle (drums)

Live Dates:

Fri 12 Jul – The Iron Road, Pershore
Sun 14 Jul – SOS Festival, Longfield Centre, Prestwich
Fri 09 Aug – ALBUM LAUNCH SHOW, The Patriot, Crumlin
Sat 17 Aug – The White Horse Inn, Tiverton
Sat 24 Aug – MoFest, Melbourn Rock Club, Meldreth
Sat 31 Aug – Den Fest V, The Rock Den, Hatfield
Fri 11 Oct – The Palladium Club, Bideford
Sat 19 Oct – Hanger 18, Swansea
Wed 23 Oct – The Waterloo Bar, Blackpool
Sat 16 Nov – Cornwall Rocks, Tencreek Holiday Park, Looe
Thur 21 Nov – The Robin 2, Bilston
Sat 30 Nov – The Rock den, Hatfield
Sun 26 Jan 2020 – Giants Of Rock, Butlins, Minehead

Official Website

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Supersonic Blues Machine have today released their brand new live-album, ‘Road Chronicles: Live!’ via Provogue/Mascot Label Group

Road Chronicles: Live‘ is their first live album, following the release of two acclaimed records, ‘West of Flushing, South of Frisco’ (2016), ‘Californisoul’ (2017) and it follows them on their first European headline tour and was recorded during their show in Brugnera, Italy on 20th July 2018, capturing the band in a triumphant and joyous mood.

The show was the final one of a 10 date tour that started at the O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire, London and took them through Switzerland, Poland, The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Spain and finally bassist Fabrizio Grossi’s native Italy. The legendary Billy F. Gibbons joined the band throughout the tour putting in the stunning performances that you would expect from such an icon and it was the first tour to feature fast-rising UK blues-rocker Kris Barras on lead vocals and guitar, taking over from Lance Lopez.

The funny thing is,” remembers Grossi, “that we were not planning to record a live record, the recordings we were capturing  were just for me to study and evaluate at the end of the tour, but as soon as were done with the last show in Brugnera, the promoter was celebrating with us and asked me “do you have a flash drive with you so I can give you tonight’s recordings?” That’s when I realized they recorded all the tracks isolated, and the curiosity started creeping in. Gibbons who was with me when I first opened up the tracks. I couldn’t stop smiling.

As there wasn’t any plans to record the show at the time, they approached it like any other and things just fell into place. “It just felt perfect; the weather, the set-list, the band were tight and then there was the crowd. “The cheers, noises and crazy antics people do when they come to see us, it’s extremely humbling and energizing” explains Grossi.

The set list weaved through the two Supersonic albums – ‘West of Flushing’s….’ (‘Remedy,’ ‘Whatchagonnado’ and ‘Running Whiskey’) and ‘Californisoul,’ (‘I Am Done Missing You’, ‘Elevate’ and ‘Broken Heart’) as well as some ZZ Top classics and surprises thrown in. “The beauty of this band is that we always bring around or have guests joining us on stage, we get used to hearing our music taking the most unexpected turns and shapes every night,” he says.  “As soon as the intro tape stops, we kind of unleash the Kraken…..the Soul Kraken,” he laughs. Drummer Kenny Aronoff, Barras and Grossi are the faces and the core of the band with The Reverend Gibbons and the party is rounded off with Alex Alessandroni Jr. on keyboards, Serge Simic on guitar and Andrea and Francis Benitez Grossi on background vocals.

With a prolific career as a producer, mixer and bass player Grossi has worked with some of the finest musicians around today pulling into an array of eclectic styles, from Steve Vai to Tina Arena, Nina Hagen to Alice Cooper as well as Glenn Hughes, Dave Navarro, George Clinton, Joe Bonamassa, Leslie West, Zakk Wylde, Ice T, Slash and Paul Stanley to name a few.  New York native but Indiana raised Aronoff brought with him the experience of working with a huge collection of artists such as John Mellencamp, Smashing Pumpkins, Meat Loaf, Brandon Flowers, John Fogerty, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Joe Cocker amongst a host of others.

An incredible list of collaborators gives the band added warmth and propels it on to another level; Billy F. Gibbons, Walter Trout, Warren Haynes, Robben Ford, Eric Gales, Joe Louis Walker, Steve Lukather, Chris Duarte all have joined the band on record and/or live, with them all having  a deep and personal connection to Grossi and Aronoff.

We could have done records and shows that was jam packed of famously random guests, but we didn’t want to do that. That’s not the idea.” He elaborates, “They’re not just guests, those guys are part of our family and just happened to show up on that song, these guys will always be part of our life, they are so important to the sound of Supersonic Blues Machine.

Upcoming Shows:
30 July – Noches del Botanico – Madrid, SPAIN ft. Billy F. Gibbons & Joe Louis Walker
02 Aug – Notodden Blues Festival – Notodden, NORWAY ft. Billy F. Gibbons, Eric Gales & Joe Louis Walker
03 Aug – Megeve Blues Festival – Combloux, FRANCE ft. Billy F. Gibbons & Joe Louis Walker

Track Listing:

1. I Am Done Missing You (Live)
2. I Ain’t Fallin’ Again (Live)
3. Remedy (Live)
4. Can’t Take It No More (Live)
5. Watchagonnado (Live)
6. Elevate (Live)
7. Bad Boys (Live)
8. Let It Be (Live)
9. La Grange (feat. Billy F. Gibbons) (Live)
10. Broken Heart (feat. Billy F. Gibbons) (Live)
11. Dust My Broom (feat. Billy F. Gibbons) (Live)
12. Running Whiskey (feat. Billy F. Gibbons) (Live)
13. Got My Mojo Working (feat. Billy F. Gibbons) (Live)
14. Going Down (feat. Billy F. Gibbons) (Live)
15. L.O.V.E. (Live) (Bonus Track)
16. Hard Times (Bonus Track) (Live)

Official Website

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Hot on the heels of their highly successful first headlining tour of the UK this summer, Midnite City are happy to announce that they will be heading out on the road again throughout the UK this November.
The ‘HERE COMES THE PARTY TOUR 2019‘ will follow the band’s much anticipated tour of Japan in October and will feature special guests Saints of Sin.

The band says “We already know that this tour is going to be off the scale and we cannot wait to see you all again!
We will be adding new songs to the set-list, as well as lots of new merchandise, and as a special thank you for all the amazing support you have given us, we will be recording a special ‘limited edition’ CD especially for the tour. Limited to just 100 copies, this CD is being specifically recorded for this tour and will ‘only’ be available at the shows in November. It won’t be released officially and also won’t be available anywhere to buy afterwards so you’ll have to get to one of the shows to get your copy.
These shows will also the be the last until Spring 2020 as we will be hard at work on our third album for the first part of next year. That means that you really DO NOT want to miss this one! We look forward to seeing you all soon.

‘Can’t Wait For The Nights…Can’t Wait For The Good Times.’

NOVEMBER 8TH – DECADENCE, LONDON*
https://www.facebook.com/events/777038169344112/

NOVEMBER 9TH – ALBERTS, NOTTINGHAM
https://www.facebook.com/events/495640717643046/

NOVEMBER 15TH – TRILLIANS, NEWCASTLE
https://www.facebook.com/events/1413968512078056/

NOVEMBER 16TH – WATERLOO, BLACKPOOL
https://www.facebook.com/events/393151381307260/

NOVEMBER 17TH – BANNERMANS, EDINBURGH
https://www.facebook.com/events/585136208641163/

NOVEMBER 22ND – COBBLESTONES, BRIDGWATER
https://www.facebook.com/events/2318800161516613/

NOVEMBER 23RD – NIGHTRAIN, BRADFORD
https://www.facebook.com/events/677154416091370/

*Saints Of Sin not appearing.

Review: Revival Black – Step In Line

Cargo Records (October 11th 2019)

Reviewer: Paul Saripo

Step In Line’ the debut album from Revival Black is a freight train of bluesy hard rock ‘n’ Roll, its simply brilliant from start to finish. This album which is due release on 11th October 2019, has not stopped playing in my house for a few days now and its not going to be removed from my daily playlist anytime soon.

This 10-track album opens with ‘Wide Awake’, the band released this as a single in April 2019 following the new arrival of Dan Byrne on vocals who stretches his pipes well throughout every track on the album. Next is ‘So Alive’, a follow up single released in June 2019. This is enjoyably hard ‘n’ heavy, with a bass intro from Jamie Hayward that I feel delivers a complimentary nod over to Lemmy.

The momentum of Ash Janes on drums continues with ‘Give You The World’. Sounds that come through here are reminiscent of Aerosmith back in the day.

Both fast string men, Alan Rimme & Adam Kerbache work in synergy to create guitar work with sleazy Louisiana riffs.

This band writes catchy hooks and no exception to this is ‘No Secrets, No Lies’ this will have you on your feet horns in the air singing along. This is one of my favourites from the album, along with the massive potential of ‘The River’ which is an epic song delivering everything one needs to form an anthem. Along with the sleazy classic ‘All I Wanna Do’ with nifty and sharp lead guitar work.

Bluesy riffs and strong bass lines can be found over on ‘Midnight Oil’  a solid groove well presented with the vocal power of Dan let louse demonstrating the range and originality of this talented rock ensemble.

If I had one thing to change it would be the ending on ‘Silverline’ it doesn’t have one. It’s a classic fade out that maybe doesn’t do the song justice on the Album.

These guys know how to create some hard and sustained rock music without drifting off on a tangent. They can write well and have some catchy hooks, particularly on ‘No Secrets, No Lies’   The album is heartfelt kick ass hard as hell Rock that doesn’t let you down, including title track ‘Step In Line’ that demonstrates that Revival Black, deserve attention.

Since I began to play this album, I haven’t been able to stop. The riffs are hard and heavy, guitars that punch out catchy riffs with sounds of the deep south. Bass that commands attention and the vocals from Dan are solid and have a powerful range that he demonstrates complete control, think early Robert Plant meets David Coverdale. There is something special about rock music and this Album has everything from the rock swagger of 1970 to the heavy packed sounds of today.

This is original and organic rock; these guys have a brilliant future.

 

 

Hailing from the Scandinavian Peninsula country of Norway, Rocky Kramer is truly a modern day Viking, poised to take no prisoners as he conquers the hearts, minds and souls of rockers around the world! Armed with a guitar, this graduate of Metal 101 constitutes a triple threat as a composer, vocalist and formidable musician.

Check out the official music video for ‘Rock Star‘ by Rocky Kramer below. The ‘Rock Star‘ single comes out July 30th. Rocky’s new album ‘Firestorm‘ album comes out August 13th.

Born in the 1990’s to musician parents, few could have known that Rocky would inherit his parents’ passion for music, ultimately transforming into Norway’s ambassador of rock.  While some homes have a piano, Rocky’s home had two – one for the upstairs and another for the downstairs. Although Rocky’s father was the first violinist in the Trondheim Symphony Orchestra, his mother was an accomplished pianist in her own right.  At the age of four, young Rocky began exploring this massive instrument. Rocky recalls “I was fascinated when I discovered I could play a melody!”  Filled with musical curiosity, the four year old began banging out rudimentary melodies that foreshadowed the composer he would become.

At the age of five, tragedy struck when Rocky’s mother succumbed to cancer, leaving Rocky, his older brother and their father to fend for themselves.  Rocky laments that “my father immediately took on the responsibility of raising two unruly boys by himself.” Shortly after his wife’s passing, the professional violinist was attempting to teach Rocky’s brother how to play the violin. As the older sibling unsuccessfully attempted to follow his father’s instruction, young Rocky volunteered to give it a go. To his father’s astonishment, five year old Rocky demonstrated incredible skill as he traversed the smallest stringed instrument, with its horsehair bow.  Little did Rocky know that his adept performance that one day would lead to conflict and turmoil that would haunt him for years, while developing him into one of the most prolific composers and profound guitarists to hit the rock scene in decades.

With a budding virtuoso on his hands, Rocky’s father encouraged violin lessons and even supplemented those lessons with private tutoring from the master himself.  On one hand Rocky knew that he was lucky to have such an accomplished violinist teaching him to master his instrument – but – there was one problem. Rocky yearned to play more contemporary instruments, such as the drums and guitar. To a virtuoso violinist, such tools of the rock world were simply blasphemous. For years the prodigal son played violin by day and rocked out at night on friends’ guitars and drums.  Requests for such trite instruments for birthdays and Christmas were met with a resounding “NO!” Soon the ember became a burning desire. Being an ardent fan of Ace Frehley, Rocky Saved his allowance, birthday offerings and all other earnings, eventually buying his first guitar – “a Les Paul Double Cut knock-off,” recalls Rocky.  It didn’t take long before Rocky discovered he was “a Fender® man;” a religion validated by his other lifelong influence, Yngwie Malmsteen – himself a Fender® worshipper. When asked what made the guitar standout, Rocky remembers falling “in love with the guitar because of its freedom; the sounds [he] could make with an electric guitar just weren’t possible given the inherent limitations of a violin.” Although he is also an accomplished pianist, the eighty-eights just seemed “too traditional” for his rocker tastes.  But there was one other instrument that caught Rocky’s eye – the drums. Unsurprisingly, Rocky managed to find drum sets at school and rehearsal halls to quench his thirst for percussion, ultimately becoming an incredibly agile drummer. The deadlock between drums and guitar was finally broken when Rocky assembled his first band. It seems there was someone else amongst his friends who could play drums, while Rocky was the only one capable of manhandling an axe. Rocky’s instrument of choice was then settled.

Although guitar became Rocky’s weapon of choice, the clash between father and son over that choice intensified.  But it was too late, the admiration Rocky felt for guitar was inescapable as the fire burned deeper with every passing day.  To his credit, Rocky’s father finally capitulated to his son’s mania, embracing the overall love for music over his own desire to see a son follow in his footsteps.  Throughout a couple of years, Rocky put together a number of bands, including Svidd Rock, Psycho Soldiers, Black Magic, Dark Symphony and finally Armed Science.  By the age of 16, Rocky’s bands had become legendary amongst local audiences, even racking up top honors with Armed Science at the UKM Regional Music Competition, just short of the national championship.

Having begun writing songs on the family piano at age four, Rocky literally wrote his first album at the age of 13, his second album followed a year later, with yet a third album emerging a year after that. At the age of 17 Rocky completed his fourth album. Amazingly, each are concept albums that speak to the maelstrom that often challenge youth during their formative years, as experienced by this adroit and poignant raconteur. By the time Rocky reached high school, he and his many bands had become well known throughout Trondheim, with recognition coming in from around the country. Feeling a level of dedication that transcended that of his fellow band members, Rocky decided to focus on developing his skills as a singer / songwriter, making a number of appearances as a solo artist.  Picking up a keyboard and learning to record his own music enabled Rocky to begin creating music demos for his four completed albums.  With the strong background in classical music imparted on him by his father, Rocky began combining the genres of music to create his own unique sound.  What emerged might be properly classified as metal symphonies for the rock enthusiast!  After spending a year in university studying film, Rocky left for the United States to augment his already impressive English language skills.  Although Norwegian is his native language, Rocky felt from a very early age that he could best convey music in the English language.  Consequently, he now speaks English quite fluently.

While attending school in the United States, Rocky caught the attention of the Allied Artists Music Group, who soon inked a deal with this inimitable musician.  Stephan Bauer, President of Allied Artists Music Group (Led Zeppelin and The Rolling Stones)  comments that “Rocky is the essence of modern metal, mixed with a tenacity that makes for rock legends” adding that “those of us at Allied Artists are proud to have him on the label and look forward to introducing him to today’s audiences who will find his music invigorating and his message captivating.”  Perhaps as a portent of things to come, Rocky was voted 2012’s Best New Male Rock Musician by the editors of Rock Over America Magazine and was recently welcomed as a new member of the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (“The Grammys”).

Building upon the success of their 2014 self-titled debut album and 2017 sophomore release ‘Scatterbrain‘, KXM returns with their third studio album, ‘Circle Of Dolls, which is scheduled for release on September 13, 2019.

KXM is comprised of Dug Pinnick of King’s X on vocals/bass, George Lynch of Lynch Mob/Dokken on guitars and Ray Luzier of Korn, on drums. ‘Circle Of Dolls features 13 new tracks and was recorded at the Steakhouse Studio in North Hollywood California, where the band once again tapped Chris “The Wizard” Collier to engineer and co-produce the new effort. 

Ray Luzier comments, “There’s a certain energy that happens in the studio very quickly when George, Dug and I get together and jam. This is our 3rd record and it was recorded with the same formula as the first two albums, no pre-written ideas, we just come up with totally fresh grooves & riffs and not over think anything. We definitely didn’t repeat ourselves, but you know for sure who it is when you hear it, all 3 records have their own unique character“. George Lynch adds, “It’s better than the first two albums. It’s insane, the magic is there, the chemistry’s there and we’re just sitting here patting ourselves on the back, telling each other what geniuses we are.” Says dUg Pinnick, “I hope everyone enjoys listening to it as much as we enjoyed recording it!

From the infectious riff of the album opener ‘War of Words‘, to the album finale of ‘The Border‘, KXM have again created something truly special and musically diverse. Songs like ‘Lightning‘, ‘Big As The Sun‘, and ‘Cold Sweats‘ are sonically different from each other taking the listener on a musical journey.  ‘Circle Of Dolls‘ is a darker record thematically than their first two albums and builds upon the established KXM rock sound with thought provoking lyrics, catchy guitar riffs and rock-solid grooves.

Pre-order ‘Circle Of DollsHERE

Track listing:

01. War of Words

02. Mind Swamp

03. Circle Of Dolls

04. Lightning

05. Time Flies

06. Twice

07. Big As The Sun

08. Vessel of Destruction

09. A Day Without Me

10. Wide Awake

11. Shadow Lover

12. Cold Sweats

13. The Border

Bonus Track

14. War of Words (Radio Edit) *CD & Download Versions Only*

Review: Hollowstar – Hollowstar

Hollowstar (May 3rd 2019)

Reviewer: David Pearce

Hollowstar’s self-titled debut album explodes out of the speakers with the driving guitars of ‘Take It All’, which sets out their stall as the next wave in UK heavy rock.

By using the two lead guitars of Phil Haines and Tom Collett, they hit the listener with a wall of noise that reminds me of the early 80s pioneers of the dual lead guitar sound Judas Priest. The drums of Jack Bonson are integral to supporting the sound in the same way as Rick Allen of Def Leppard does a lot of the heavy lifting in their songs.

Finally we get to Joe Bonson’s towering vocals. He has a set of pipes very similar to Neville MacDonald of the short lived, but brilliant 90s band Skin. He is able to handle the whole range of a heavy rock singer’s art with seeming ease.

Let You Down‘ is a classic rock track that doesn’t just slavishly copy the genre but brings something new to it and serves notice that these guys can really invigorate the sound and bring it to a new audience. ‘Invincible‘ sees Jack Bonson delivering smooth vocals that demonstrate how easily he can hold the listener in the palm of his hands.

Live performances from Hollowstar are going to be a real event as they move on to bigger and bigger venues. ‘Think of Me‘ is a heavy rock love song in which the lyrics are genuinely heartfelt and all the more impactful for being unexpected. ‘Money‘ starts with an expert guitar riff that sees it act as percussion just as much as it acts as the basis for the tune. It is a bravura piece of playing that shows the sheer talent of the band.

All I Gotta Say‘ is a song about a bad end to a relationship that strikes a note of defiance that will no doubt resonate with many a listener! When you listen to this album the second or third time really focus on the lyrics because Hollowstar take as much time on them as they do on the music, which is by no means universal.

Good Man Gone‘ is another great example of the tightness of the band where all four components just blend together to create rock alchemy. Overrated is definitely something they are not, but Hollowstar have fun with the title and the song will probably become a live favourite with the refrain ‘I know I’ve got the mind of a warrior‘ just asking for a full throated singalong.

Down by the Water‘ is a track that has a hint of Paradise City in the guitar riff and it’s so good that Slash himself would probably be quite happy with the comparison. This incredibly good debut album finishes with ‘Sinner‘, an Aerosmith style full on rocker that leaves you wanting more as every final track should.

Make no mistake there’s real substance to Hollowstar!