Reviews roundup – Bloodbound vs. Sasha McVeigh vs. Heavy Star vs. The Rising vs. Stringman Delivery
One Night Of Blood
A live album from Swedish heavy metal mob, Bloodbound, along with a mini DVD thing. That’s where you’re getting here as they celebrate ten years of existence.
Of course, the reason they’ve lasted ten years and half a dozen albums is because they’re good. However, the reason they’ve never broken out is because they aren’t great. Which isn’t to say this isn’t enjoyable. Because it is. But as with the studio albums it’s not something to have on repeat play.
Having said that, though, there are plenty of riffs to air guitar to, they have some singalong choruses and plenty of places where headbanging is obligatory. Their fans will lap this up, as they blast through an hour of power metal, with tales of derring do, demons and wizards. Manowar fans will find this a familiar place. Mind how you go, though, because the DVD isn’t an actual love show, rather a collection of half a dozen clips including three goes at “In The Name Of Metal”!
When I’m Over You
A mainstream country ballad now, from the up and coming UK country singer, Sasha McVeigh. And it’s very good. If you like the whole pop country thing that Nashville does these days.
Ms McVeigh has been over in the American colonies touring and writing, and there is a sheen here that comes from working at our craft. She’s a good singer, and if this could get heard in the right places, then she could take a step up. She’ll be out on tour in the UK and playing festivals all over the place.
Find out more here – https://www.facebook.com/SashaMcVeigh/ and if you like what you hear, give her “I Stand Alone” album a chance.
Back to the riffs now with some Italian hair metal. Yes, it’s the late eighties all over again, which suits me fine, as I can convince myself for half an hour that the arthritis is actually a crowd surfing related injury, and not old age.
They’re a new band, although their leader Marco K-Ace (probably not his real name) first came to light performing on the debut album by Chris Catena. Here he’s joined by deceased serial killer Albert Fish (vocals), Danny Slade (guitars), Roberto Biaggione (bass) and Mauro Money (drums) for a Kiss and Ratt influenced romp.
It’s very much Sunset Strip rawk from the past, with ‘Blessed’ and the title track the best of the bunch. They throw in a Kiss Kover of “Love Gun” and leave the ballad to the end, which is always a good idea. A fun release for people still in mourning for the first Faster Pussycat album.
Once upon a time there was a Northern Irish band called Exit, who featured in Kerrap! magazine. But then they got Bruce Springsteens Greatest Hits for Christmas, and thought I’m having some of that.
So, they became The Rising, and have been pitched to me as a country rock band. Well, they’re not. They’re a Bruce Springsteen meets REM with some latter day Wilco band. I suppose they country tag that’s been applied to them is down to the fact that a lor of what comes out of Nashville bears only a passing resemblance. Which will appeal to a fair number of middle aged men out there, nursing a half of real ale, while reminiscing about the days when they could handle a whole pint.
A lot of the songs chug along at mid-tempo without ever really breaking out into a tune, so when they find some balls, as they do on “Highway To The Lost & Found”, it really takes you by surprise. In a good way. If you read the small print, you’ll notice that they’ve worked with an engineer who has twiddled Keith Urban and Taylor Swifts knobs. Which explains a lot. There is some potential here. I just hope they realise it.
Tonight We Ride
Now, if Stringman Delivery are ever looking for an opening act, then the aforementioned The Rising wouldn’t offend the audience. Because the Strings (as I shall call them) take their influences from the likes of Neil Young, the Byrds and Tom Petty.
Led by Don Stephens, who has previously released acoustic albums, he can trace his roots back to playing coffee houses in the mid-’70s. Now he’s hooked up with guitarist Gary Stephens, drummer Mike Cerny and bassist Terrell Mabrito for an electric outing which will appeal to fans of Tom Petty and his ilk.
They’ve got some good tunes under their belt with the likes of ‘A Game Called Love’, ‘A Long Way To Go’ and ‘Why Am I Trying So Hard’ more than enough to make fans of their heartland rock very happy indeed.