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Review: Lifeline – Scream

Lifeline - Scream

 

Lifeline – Scream
Escape Music (2015)

Reviewer – Stephen Brophy
Lifeline are a UK based melodic rock band with one hell of a lineup, containing Lee Small (SHY, Phenomena, Snowfall), Nigel Bailey (Three Lions, Bailey) both taking their turns on the mic throughout the album along with Paul Hume (Guitar/Producer – Lawless, Demon), Steve Clarkson (Drums – Bailey) and Andy Bailey (Keyboards – Three Lions, Bailey) this is one powerful unit. Having never made any bones about being a massive fan of pretty much everything Lee has worked on and loving Nigel’s work too, straight away my personal excitement levels were pretty high for this release.
From the belting opening track ‘Fear No More‘ which features Lee on vocals, you are shown the direction of this album… Melodic Rock With a driving rhythm section, Lee is one of the finest singers in modern day UK Rock and he’s on absolutely top form here and the advantage of having a couple of top class singers in a band is that the backing vocals are superb all over the album, it adds that little extra dimension to some of the tracks, not exactly Duets as such but more than just someone throwing in the odd harmony or accompaniment for effect, and Nigel’s work on this track is a perfect example, the music is really good too, with a very catchy riff, and the whole thing lifted by the sound of additional keyboards, this is a great start.
It is great to hear a lot of albums of late that don’t have ten or twelve tracks that are just spun out in the exact same style and this album is no exception, all of the writing has been done by Nigel, but it certainly doesn’t just sound like he’s sat down and written one long piece and then chopped it into different song names. What we have here is twelve individual tracks that stand up for themselves, on first listen I actually got the feeling from this release that it was a compilation album, which in itself would have been no bad thing, but the more I’ve listened the more things knit together quite nicely, and although the tracks have different approaches and sounds they work really well together.
Jezebel‘ is very different and reminds me of Thin Lizzy in places, but with Nigel taking the lead on this one and Lee winding his way though the middle too this is another excellent song, having such an experienced guitarist as Paul Hume in the project just adds a different layer, and he’s all over this one.
Other highlights for me are ‘Destination Freedom‘ with a couple of terrific solos on it while holding out an ever so slight almost Van Halen sound in the guitar sound in places, but it all sounds very upbeat and positive and ‘Mary Jane‘ which again is unlike anything else on offer here, but still in the Melodic Rock area, but it’s that little bit darker, which is great, once again both vocalists weave the story between them and more really nice guitar work, not to ignore Steve’s drumming , Andy’s keyboards, and Nigel’s bass which are all spot on right through album. One of the more classy tracks I have heard in a long time is ‘Now His Angels Gone‘ which is wonderfully steered by Nigel, he really does have a knack of creating moving ballads with that little something extra, and the delivery is always top notch. With a very simple but oh so effective keyboard intro, the story is delivered amidst more really well balanced guitar work and softened bass, with no instruments overpowering anywhere along the way, I’m sure it would sound even better with a string section as opposed to synthesized accompaniment, but it’s a minor point on a lovely piece.
Overall this album is a really excellent piece of work with each of the individual components blending and working with each other to create a really top quality result, Nigel, Lee, Paul, Steve and Andy should all be really proud of this body of work and it would be wonderful if we get to heard these songs live at some stage as some of them would sound absolutely huge. Mr. Bailey has another winner here and long may that trend continue.

On Tonight’s Rockposer’s Roulette Radio Show….

August 28th

 

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Review: Skip Rock – Take It Or Leave It

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Review: Skip Rock – Take It Or Leave It

Streetdog Records (2015)

Reviewer: Dan Mann

I’ll be honest and say that before this release I hadn’t actually heard of Skip Rock, a band who’ve apparently been around for more than six years.

According to the accompanying press release, this album is a change from their previous stuff. The change in question sees the band combining elements of heavy metal with country. Now before you pull a face, think southern rock with balls as a more accurate description.

Kicking off the album is the ‘Intro‘ which is quite fitting, very Cinderella ‘Bad Seamstress Blues’ meets ‘A Fist Full Of Dollars’ instantly making you think of the Wild West before the album launches into ‘Tell Me Why‘ which is a pretty decent hard rock track with hints of southern and elements of the intro sneaking in.

The tolling of a church bell leads us into ‘Death Or Glory‘ which again is a fairly straightforward hard rock track with some great grinding guitar work that got me reaching to turn up the volume.

The country element rears it’s head for ‘Jesse James‘ a track that wouldn’t be out of place on say a Medicine Hat release. Following that is ‘Outlaws‘, which continues with that country feel, but sounding a little weak compared with some of the other tracks.

No surprise with the intro to ‘Motorcycle Mann II‘ as a motorcycle (Harley) starts up and rides off, taking us into some frantic guitar work from Darius Dee. Again more southern rock with a bit more guts to it.

Rich N Nazty‘ brings an almost sleaze element to the sound with the vocals sounding a bit ragged at times. ‘Hell Is On Fire‘ is rather Skinny Molly in flavour but with the slightly guttural vocals of Mark Terry. Slowing back down for ‘Too Young‘ a ’round the campfire’ style ballad with some female accompaniment, all in all very enjoyable. ‘Take It Or Leave It‘ brings us back to the grinding guitar style of previous tracks. I found the vocals a little weak in some respects on this track.

Tracks eleven & twelve are live bonus tracks, the first being ‘Hit And Run‘ and the second entitled ‘Rough And Ready‘. Rough and ready would pretty much sum up these two tracks. I think a case of great if you were there but not as good when transferred to album.

To summarize, not a bad album by any means and I can see where they’re trying to go with this release. Maybe the vocals need to be a little more controlled and a little more polish to the overall package, but fairly enjoyable none the less.

 

 


Joe Bonamassa Releases ‘Live at Radio City Music Hall’

Joe Bonamassa - Live at Radio City Music Hall

Joe Bonamassa will release ‘Live At Radio City Music Hall’ on 2nd October via Provogue/Mascot Label Group. The live concert will be released on DVD+CD, Blu-ray+CD, and 180 gram 2LP vinyl with free MP3 download code.

The live release was filmed over his two sold out shows on 23rd and 24th January 2015 at the iconic Radio City Music Hall  in the heart of New York City.  It’s the largest and most iconic music theatre in the world.  Joe’s father would take Joe to Radio City as a boy to see shows in the city, and it had forever been his dream venue to play as a musician.

Download a free mp3 of “One Less Cross To Bear” taken from the album “Live At Radio City Music Hall” by clicking the following web link – www.unlock.fm/4uw

Live At Radio City Music Hall dovetails Joe Bonamassa’s 8- date October 2015 UK tour, which kicks off at Newcastle Metro Arena (Wednesday Oct 21), followed by dates at Liverpool Echo Arena (Friday Oct 23), Leeds First Direct Arena (Saturday Oct 24), Nottingham Capital FM Arena (Sunday Oct 25), Cardiff Motorpoint Arena (Tuesday Oct 27), Bournemouth BIC (Wednesday Oct 28), and two dates at Brighton BIC (Friday October 30 & Saturday Oct 31). Tickets are available from www.eventim.co.uk or 0844 493 6666.  Click here for more info about the live album –  http://bit.ly/1JxPLKQ

 Joe Bonamassa “Live At Radio City Music Hall” CD Track Listing:

  1. I Can’t Be Satisfied
  2. One Less Cross To Bear
  3. Living On The Moon
  4. I Gave Up Everything For You, ‘Cept The Blues
  5. Dust Bowl
  6. Trouble Town
  7. Still Water
  8. Different Shades Of Blue
  9. Happier Times
  10. Never Give All Your Heart
  11. Hidden Charms
  12. Love Ain’t A Love Song
  13. So, What Would I Do?

Joe Bonamassa “Live At Radio City Music Hall” Video Track Listing:

  1. Bite The Big Apple (titles)
  2. Dust Bowl
  3. Trouble Town
  4. Still Water
  5. Different Shades Of Blue
  6. The Huckleberries – Introducing the acoustic band
  7. Black Lung Heartache
  8. Happier Times
  9. Never Give All Your Heart
  10. Hidden Charms
  11. Living On The Moon
  12. I Can’t Be Satisfied
  13. Double Trouble
  14. One Less Cross To Bear
  15. Love Ain’t A Love Song
  16. Introducing the Electric Band
  17. “Happy Birthday Mom!”
  18. I Gave Up Everything For You, ‘Cept The Blues
  19. So, What Would I Do?

Bonus Featurette:

  1. Bite The Big Apple – (behind-the-scenes) 45 minutes

Federal Charm ‘Across The Divide’ Album Details Revealed

Federal Charm - Across The Divide

UK rockers Federal Charm will release their new album, ‘Across The Divide“’, on October 2nd via Wire-Sound/Cargo Records. The follow-up to 2013’s debut album is being produced by Jon Green & Federal Charm. The blistering lead-off track, ‘Hercules‘, will lead the charge and is to be released as a digital download on 14 September 2015.

Drawing from a deep well, spanning the classic rock curve from the Allman Brothers to Zeppelin, with the indie blues of The Black Keys and the contemporary bluster of Rival Sons, Federal Charm are full of melodic twin-guitar twists and stop-start rhythms. Their fresh direction has turned many an industry head, describing the band as having the most cutting-edge sound in recent years.

‘Across The Divide‘ track listing:

1. Master Plan
2. Guess What
3. No More
4. These Four Walls
5. Hercules
6. Give Me Something
7. Silhouette
8. God, Forsaken
9. Push
10. The Thrill
11. Walk Away (time & time again)

Federal Charm will be extensively promoting ‘Across The Divide‘ throughout the Autumn of 2015 and on into 2016. Initially, in September and October, as special guests on the Planet Rock sponsored Joanne Shaw Taylor UK outing. 20 plus dates culminating in two sold-out shows atThe Jazz Café, London. Thereafter, the band go it alone, headlining club dates and making festival appearances.

The band released their debut to critical acclaim in the summer of 2013. ‘Jaw-dropping. 8 out of 10’, said Classic Rock. High profile opening slots for, amongst others, Michael Schenker, UFO,Black Star Riders, Ian Hunter and Rich Robinson cemented the buzz and promptly realised an impressive 5000 sales.

Federal Charm

Federal Charm band is:
Nick Bowden – Vocals, Guitars, Harmonica
Paul Bowe – Guitars, Banjo
L.D. Morawski – Bass
Danny Rigg – Drums, Percussion

Official Website

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American Mafia Release Video For ‘Death & Satisfaction’

Rock N' Roll Hit Machine

American Mafia have released a video for ‘Death & Satisfaction’, taken from their 2014 release ‘Rock N’ Roll Hit Machine’.

“Death & Satisfaction” is an indictment of today’s corporate news media, whose divisive rhetoric is driven by scorched earth tactics of fear and humiliation. Their inability to provide unbiased, factual accounts is lampooned in this video by two self-serving anchor people who can’t even tolerate each other, much less the tragedies they are covering. This dynamic is framed by our very own wise guy. The mafia may have been dismantled in American society, but crime still persists, except now it exists at the white collar, corporate and Wall St. levels. Our wise guy’s way of dealing with the carnage he’s being served on TV (by corporate America), isn’t to simply turn if off, but to destroy it.

Official Website

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