A huge week for new music thanks to the main band. The fact that anyone has put out an album the same day as Metallica is insane, but there is plenty to sink our teeth into and some really great stuff at that. Check it out with us!
Metallica: 72 Seasons
Arguably the biggest band of all time, and easily one of my favourites. I had to give this my full attention, so read the full review here.
The 20th album from the thrash legends picks up right from where 2019s Wings of War left off. The opening title track really highlights the band’s sound not just over the last decade but over their whole careers, and is an excellent place to start. They have easily been one of the most consistent thrash bands around alongside Exodus. ‘Goin’ Home’ is jam packed with great riff after great riff and has one of my favourite guitar solos on the album. It’s also amazing how well Blitz has looked after his vocals over all these years, sounding up there with the likes of Bruce Dickinson and Rob Halford these days. The drumming is the real unsung hero of the album though, Jason does an incredible job.
‘Wicked Place’ and ‘Harder They Fall’ are two more highlights of an honestly stacked album. I’ve been a fan of the band for a while but honestly haven’t really given them the credit they clearly deserve. This is excellent, and proves they are still one of the best thrash bands around today. 9/10
LA Guns: Black Diamonds
Tracii Guns’ post GnR project are back with their 14th studio album. I remember checking out their last one when it came out, giving it a 7.5/10 (check it out here). Much like their previous album, it doesn’t really have the glam/Sleaze metal feel to it that the band were known for back in the day. It still has some AOR tones but feels like a lot more modern, like more recent Bullet Boys or even (and I’m sure some hate me making the comparison) Chinese Democracy.
Still, tracks like the slower ballad ‘Diamonds’, the blusey ‘Shame’ and the faster, more old school ‘Lowlife’ are all highlights of the album. Overall, I think I enjoyed it more than their last one. I simply don’t think it was arranged very well. The opener didn’t land for me, but some of the later songs were amazing. It’s a fun album with plenty of good rock songs throughout and one I’ll happily listen to again. 8/10
Despite the Reverence: Stress of Evolution
Max: So this was one of those bands that I had never heard of before and I’m always ready to find another fantastic band much like I did when I first heard Sleep Token. This band only disappointed in one regard; why do they only have 91 monthly listeners on Spotify? The guitars and bass all had this very constant and moving feel throughout which allowed for so much energy to be carried through the album. The drums were great and I really need to start learning drums again because there are so many things that drummers like this do which just astound me with how effortlessly they seem to be yet brilliant they are. And then the vocals, I could understand the cleans taking a bit of time for people to get used to but I loved them and then the screams felt almost like older Parkway Drive, so they were awesome. This has to be an 8/10
Penny Rich: If Everyone’s An Expert, What’s Left to be Learnt?
I wasn’t coming into this album expecting such riffs. Right from the offset with ‘Spirals’ it’s one sludgy, pretty heavy riff after the other. Meanwhile, the vocals and overall vibe gave off heavy Dead Kennedy’s vibes. Considering this was described to me as indie I was very pleasantly surprised, it’s like a dark punk sort of feel. Tracks like ‘SPA’ and ‘Downfall’ are also great. I love the energy to it all, and their talent helps a bunch too. 7.5/10, a good album!
Fruit Bats: A River Running to your Heart
Having caught a bit of these at The Long Road last year (check out the review here) I was excited to check out this album! Honestly, it’s the perfect album to just chuck on and chill to, too. It’s very stripped back, pop/indie centric Americana, and it’s a lot of fun. The vocals reminded me a lot of Billy Corgan at times, fitting in surprisingly well over the chilled out instrumentation. It also had a slight Mothers Milk RHCP vibe to it. ‘See the World by Night’ was probably my favourite track on the album, but there really isn’t a bad track on it really. It did get slightly repetitive by the halfway mark, but that’s more personal preference than anything I think. 7.5/10
Alase: A Matter of Time
Max: Firstly, and I know this doesn’t affect the music but it should be said, the album art is brilliant. In terms of the actual music, it was really really good. It was really fun to listening to and there are many points where the music swells and it leaves you floating but then the screams ground you again and make you feel so much energy. This is only amplified by the drums and guitars which really demonstrate all of this. The quality of the recording also really helps with this as it was very good and was definitely done with the overall goal of the album in mind. 8/10
Jesus Piece: …So Unknown
Max: Right, definitely a change of pace from the previous two albums. But, it fully carries on the trend of this week having great albums. There is so much intensity and energy throughout the songs. I can imagine just how mental this band would be live. The bass really deserves some recognition because its all too easy for it to become buried in the rest of the music but this band clearly loves it and does a lot of work to make sure that it can be heard and it’s an important part of each song. The drums are very good and there are so many changes in pace and blast beats that I can’t fathom ever playing something like this. The vocals are amazing and feel like a cross between Knocked Loose, Kublai Khan TX and Alpha Wolf so they really deserve some praise. A very well deserved 9/10
Mike Miz: Only Human
The debut album of this upbeat Americana artist is fantastic. ‘Hand of the Sculptor’ is the perfect opener, feeling like an upbeat mixture between country and New Orleans-infused blues/soul rock. It’s follower ‘Only Human’ instead gives off heavy Fleetwood Mac vibes. It’s also got a fantastic chorus to it. ‘Six Ways from Sundays’ has an albums jazz infusion to the blues rock. The second half of the album, while it falls off in terms of pace, it doesn’t let up in terms of quality. ‘You Make me Feel’ is like an early 2000s pop ballad that I could easily hear filling the radio stations back then. And album closer ‘Tail Lights’ rocks it back up perfectly. A very good feel-good album, even despite the lyrics at times. 8.5/10
Another album we did a full review of a couple of months back now. It was awesome! Check it out here.
White Rose Motor Oil: The Gift of Poison
First of all, these guys need way more listens than they have. So stop reading this right now and go check out the band and this album in particular.
Back? Okay, let’s continue.
This was awesome. It’s like dark Americana, having a pop-country twang to it. Opener ‘Ain’t no Saint’ hooked me in immediately with the incredible writing, catchy hooks and amazing lyricism, and it only continued to hit thr mark with all three from there. ‘Red Light’ is another amazing track while songs like ‘Hateland’ and ‘Blood Left to Bleed’ are also Hugh highlights. Honestly though, the whole album is amazing, there isn’t a bad track on it. I would say it’s the perfect album to put on and chill out to, but given the dark, sometimes heavier themes, that may not be entirely true! Either way, the band have a new huge fan in me! 9/10