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Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Reviews: The Graveltones, Klone, The Dead Daisies

The Graveltones: Love Lies Dying (Lagoon Dog)

So Aussie two-piece The Graveltones get around to releasing their sophomore album after relentlessly touring their debut and building up their profile as one of the bands to watch on the live circuit. So has this relentless touring affected this second album well in a way yes, where as their first was a raucous riot of garage-blues noise this spreads their wings a little with tracks like I'm A Ghost channelling that late 60's vibe of The Who and The Rolling Stones with rolling drum lines and some honky tonk piano which comes before the haunting whispered menace of Back To You which would sit well on a Nick Cave record and the keening casino waltz of Together Again. However never fear because the band still ply their trade in riff filled snotty punk rockers Kiss & Fuck Off, Jack White baiting garage riffs World On A String and shuffling old school blues see Big Money which turns into fuzzed up chorus. Jimmy O plays  mean guitar effortlessly switching between old bluesman on Can't Tell A Man and rock god on Come and Find Me, his wailing howl also adding guts to the songs while Mikey Sorbello shows once again why he is one of best sticks men out there quite content with smashing hell out of kit as he is off kilter percussion on Running To You the value of studio man Carl Hudson's keys cannot be underestimated though on This Love's Gonna Break especially. As with many bands that astound live this album doesn't truly capture their live assault but it does go some way to show how good these songs and although not as immediate as it's predecessor the more mature style of song writing shown on this album means that they will all be great additions to the bands show when they are inevitably on tour again. 8/10

Klone: Here Comes The Sun (Verycords)

I saw Frenchmen Klone supporting Gojira a few years ago and I will admit I wasn't impressed, they played progressive groove metal that didn't really do it for me however like many bands who start out with heavy past they have totally changed their style on this their fifth record now playing the same kind of heavy, progressive, atmospheric metal that Anathema and Katatonia play with driving harmonic guitar playing from Guillaume Bernard and Aldrick Guadagnino who still have the metallic ower of their early releases while adding flowing smooth guitar lines over the top. The band also have hard hitting drums and bass from Florent Marcadet  and Jean-Etienne Maillard witnessed on the sparse, percussive The Drifter and anguished, passionate vocals from Yann Ligner, their secret weapon though is Matthieu Metzger who fleshes out the sound on tracks like Immersion with samples, keys, midi controller and saxophones that allows the band to add to their sound meaning that they can drop in elements of Pink Floyd, Porcupine Tree and also Tool, especially on Gone Up In Flames which has Maynard James Keenan all over it. It's hard to pick out individual tracks on this album as it needs to be taken in one sitting but with anthemic, heart tugging tracks like Nebulous, the chugging Grim Dancing, Anathema-like Come Undone all filling up an album that climaxes with a plaintive cover of George Gershwin's Summertime which builds from just one acoustic guitar. Klone have managed to successfully change their style to a bleaker yet cosonant, harmonious style of music fuelled by passionate instrumentation and vocals filled with heartbreak, I know at least one member of the MoM crew that will love this record and hopefully it's a change that will see Klone go onto bigger and better things! 9/10    

The Dead Daisies: RevoluciĆ³n (Spitfire Music)

RevoluciĆ³n is the second album from classic sounding hard rockers and is named in honour them being them being the first Western band to play Cuba since trade ties were reopened. The band have always been a bit of an anomaly in the music scens as they are less a supergroup but more of a band made up of many session musicans, almost like Toto albeit in a different genre, because of this their membership is fluid with only really guitarists David Lowry, Richard Fortus (Guns N Roses), keyboardist Dizzy Reed (Guns N Roses), bassist Marco Mendoza (ex Thin Lizzy/Black Star Riders, Various) being the constants in the band (touring commitments allowing). However since their first album a few things have changed in The Dead Daisies original frontman (and founding member) Jon Stevens (Ex INXS, solo & stage) and drummer Frank Ferrer have left allowing Brian Tichy (Whitesnake) to take over the sticks (after another few men sat behind the stool). Stevens however has had his mic taken over by ex Motley Crue man John Corabi and the band have not lost any of the hard rock drive they had on their debut. The album gets started with the melodic lead guitar work of Fortus underpinned by Reed's organ, the heavy rock rhythm on Mexico kicks in as the track swaggers along as Corabi hollers over the top with his smoky vocals as Dizzy Reed pounds his piano adding to the track, Evil has killer solo in the middle of it, Looking For The One is a blues based rocker whereas Empty Heart is a powerful track with touches of AOR. In fact this album draws from a number of classic rock influences and they seem to have honed their songwriting to pitch them in the early 90's style of rock favoured by Thunder, a touch of Bon Jovi on With You And I and heap of hip swaggering blues based rock n roll favoured by The Rolling Stones (Something I Said) and The Black Crowes for good measure. The Dead Daisies have produced yet another great album of muscular hard rock buoyed by the sterling guitar and keys work and Corabi's expressive Cornell-like voice, unlike many 'super groups' The Dead Daisies are not about egos or money they are just trying to make good music. Great album for lovers of superior classic rock. 9/10  

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