Sebastian Bach-Give 'Em Hell ©2014 Frontiers Records
Solid outing from former Skid Row frontman. Pretty heavy stuff scattered throughout the album and Bach's vocals sound great. Steve Stevens shows up on a couple of tracks on this album. Being a big fan of Stevens I always tend to pay attention and the chemistry with Bach is really good. The guitar work is pretty flashy throughout with some good heavy riffs. Songwriting is very good with a good chunk of these songs being memorable right away. The more melodic stuff is done well although most of this album goes for the throat. Good crossover appeal to old and new fans alike. Solid!
Lions of the South-Chronicles of Aggression ©2014 Lions of the South
Florida Based metallers Lions of the South appropriately named this album. It's very aggressive and mixes a hybrid sound of thrash and metal with a solid underlining vibe. The album consists of 9 tracks of intense metal sounds with some proficient musicianship. Vocals are a little more extreme, but not to the point of being distracting. Being a big fan of old school thrash, one can draw the comparisons with the riffing. The tempo is also frenzied as one would expect from this type of band. This record is an easy recommendation to fans on the heavier side of the metal spectrum.
Tony Clark and Killing Time ©2013 Vanity Music Group
Tony Clark and Killing Time haven't been together for very long, but what they are churning out shows their potential. This 5 track e.p. leans more modern in terms of sound and has quite a few different personalities with this batch of songs. More modern rockers such as the opener 'She's at the Center of Her World' and the hard hitting 'I am the Dirt' with it's heavy vibe. The latter is one of my personal favorites from this mini album. Looking atthe album overall, it's a good start for these guys and shows an insight of what may come in future albums. Definitely give them a listen if you like it more modern.
Gamma Ray-Empire of the Undead ©2014 Eagle Rock Entertainment
Looking back, I'm amazed at just how long Gamma Ray has been on the scene. I've been there for every step of the way as a fan. Musically, the band is very consistent. They have their style and they stick to what works best for them. One has to look at the memorability factor of the songs to gauge how good each album is. Does it stick with you or get passed by. 'Empire of the Undead' definitely is some of the bands best work. Like a fine wine, they get better with time. The album is exactly what fans will expect in terms of sound and intensity. Nothing really out of the norm, but it's all pretty solid!
Gotthard-Bang! ©2014 G Records
Second Gotthard release with Nic Maeder. This release is exactly why I was pulling for the band to move on after the untimely death of vocalist Steve Lee. It was obvious that the band had much more to say and Steve is probably smiling upon what the band is doing. This album has everything that always made a Gotthard album great. Good rockers, and morethought provoking melodic moments as well. The track 'Thank You' is one of the very best melodic songs I have ever heard from the band. Kind of like their own 'November Rain' Very solid album with a lot of tracks. Recommended!