Quick plays: MIDNITE SKY, KRUK, THE CRINGE, FUSION ORCHESTRA 2

Midnite Sky - Blood, Sweat And A Little More

MIDNITE SKY – Blood, Sweat and A Little More
www.midnitesky.de [Released 1.12.13]

German melodic rock band who have a passion for bands like Europe, Dokken and Bonfire. Kicking off with the Europe sounding ‘Hellfire’ the band don’t really have any fillers on here.

I am surprised they haven’t been picked up by a melodic rock label, although with a glossy production and decent CD inlay the band seems to have coped fine on their own. ‘Feels Like Heaven’ has a great chorus recalling those 80’s albums we still play and enjoy today. They even give Steel Panther a run for their money in the lyric stakes on ‘Sex Bomb Love Machine’!

For an independently released band Midnite Sky deserve a listen from melodic rock fans. Yes it’s nothing new but they do it so well and the guitar solos are a particular treat throughout the album.  ***1/2

Review by Jason Ritchie

KRUK – Before He’ll Kill You

Metal Mind Productions [Released 24.02.14]

This is a re-issue of the band’s 2009 debut album with three added bonus live tracks. Kruk are big news in their native Poland and judging by this album they have the songs to appeal to classic rock fans who hanker after Rainbow. In fact vocalist Tomasz Wisniewski sounds uncannily like label mate and former Rainbow vocalist Doogie White.

The keys and Hammond organ playing of Krzysiek Walczyk recall Deep Purple and Rainbow in their 70′s pomp with some lovely keyboard runs on the epic ‘Reality (It’s A Foolish Cry)’. The band really do like their 70′s rock and songs like ‘The Escape’ and the driving rock of opener ‘Lady Chameleon’ show they are worthy of your ears and time.

If you like classic hard rock this band will be right up your street. ***1/2

Review by Jason Ritchie

THE CRINGE – Hiding In Plain Sight

Sony/Red [Released 14.04.14]

This is the Cringe’s fourth studio album and they are led by vocalist/keys/rhythm guitarist John Cuismano, with the line-up also featuring former Mr Bungle/Air guitarist James ‘Roto’ Rotondi. The band are also bravely opening for those very un-PC glam metalers Steel Panther here in the UK.

The music takes in bits of Velvet Revolver (check out ‘One Horse Town’ for proof), QOTSA and even the Foo Fighters. They also know how to pen a foot tapping 70′s influenced rock ‘n’ roller like ‘Can’t Find A Way’, easily the best song on here. Strangely the album opens with the two weakest songs for me, although do keep going as the album grows on you. There is even a little gospel tinged revival on ‘Gimme Resurrection’.

An interesting and enjoyable mix of classic rock and radio friendly indie rock. ***1/2

Review by Jason Ritchie

FUSION ORCHESTRA 2 – Casting Shadows

www.fusionorchestra2.com

The original Fusion Orchestra released their debut album way back in the early 70′s and this new version of the band features original members Colin Dawson (guitarist) and Ben Bell (keyboards). They are joined by bassist Shemeck Fraczek and drummer Seex Dyer, with Elsie Lovelock on vocals.

Proper prog rock on here with three epic songs interspersed by four short instrumental pieces. They have a passion for jazzy passages and a lot of instrumental ‘wig outs’, possibly a little too much jazz for my personal taste.

Fans of the band will be pleased they are finally back and if jazz prog rock is your thing this album is worthy of your attention. ***1/2

Review by Jason Ritchie

 


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Throughout December we are featuring Best of 2019 selections from the GRTR! Reviewers.

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A selection of albums featured in 2019



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