Spitfire Music [Release date – out now]
The Dead Daisies career is, ironically, blooming at the moment. The lead single from the album ‘Lock ‘N’ Load’ featuring Slash on guitar is all over the rock radio stations and the band are currently touring the UK in support to Black Star Riders. Two questions though are, ‘Who the hell are they?’ and, ‘Are they any good?’
The first of the two questions is the harder one to answer as this is more of a musical project than a settled band line up, indeed only frontman Jon Stevens and guitarist Dave Lowy have made the transition from the album to touring band. However as the touring line up features two members of Guns ‘N’Roses and a Rolling Stone the guys appear to have a very useful little black book. The answer to the second question is more straight forward, yes, they are very good.
With the calibre of the musicians involved in the recording it would have been hard to produce a duff album to be honest. Jon Stevens has had a long career fronting both Noiseworks and INXS as well as playing in Australian productions of Jesus Christ Superstar and releasing several solo albums. The other mainstay, Dave Lowy, has played with several bands over the years and is a seasoned pro. The fact they managed to gather a group of top class musicians to join them is testament to their collective prowess and the album content shows that they can write a mean song or two.
Blues laden rock is the best way to describe the band’s sound. Stevens has a rasping, emotion filled voice which perfectly fits the bluesy feel of the record. ‘It’s Gonna Take Time’ opens the album with an urgent staccato riff with Jon spitting out the lyrics before the track opens out into a laid back chorus. ‘Lock ‘N’ Load’ is up next which sounds like it could have been lifted from one of Slash’s albums, which is no criticism, a great rocking track with the trademark Slash guitar solo. ‘Washington’ has a Stones like vibe to it while ‘Yeah, Yeah, Yeah’ is a straightforward rocker with a hooky chorus.
‘Yesterday’ then slows things down and is a real heartfelt blues ballad to bring a tear to the eye before the rhythmic ‘Writing On The Wall’ ups the pace once more. We then enter rocking blues territory once more for the next few tracks, all big riffs and big choruses the quality shining through in each song. The album then rounds off with ‘Can’t Fight This Feeling’ which is a slow burner with a big finish and ‘Talk To Me’ rocks you all the way to the end.
I must admit I did enjoy this album more each time I listened. There is a depth to each track that may not be instantly obvious on the first listen but after a few more spins the quality shines through. How long will the project last? Who knows, but get the album and enjoy it while it does. ****
Review by David Wilson
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