Nuclear Blast [Release date 08.04.16]
I first came across Tax The Heat supporting prog/pomp rock veterans Kansas back in 2014 and was suitably impressed by their live show. Since then they have toured extensively and signed with Nuclear Blast.
The latter does cause online consternation among some metal fans on the band’s YouTube videos, who are expecting a much more extreme metal act to be on the label. Instead we have this four piece – Jack Taylor (drums), Antonio Angotti (bass), JP Jacyshyn (guitars), Alex Veale (vocals/guitars) – belting out an album of intense and hard rocking blues based tunes. Nuclear Blast aren’t daft as in this band they have one who can easily step in and have a much wider appeal outside of the metal arena.
Opener ‘Highway Home’ far jumps out to the speakers, wallow in the guitars and booming bass riff on this one. ‘Animals’ is the most instant song on here, sure it has a White Stripes/Jack White and QOTSA feel, but what a tune! The vocals of Alex Veale really make the listener sit up and take note, one minute putting venom into the verses and then soaring melodically at the choruses.
Jack Taylor’s drum sponsors must love him as he fair belts out the drums and percussion, none more so than on ‘Under Watchful Eye’. The guitars and bass are not to be outdone though and on this song, as indeed on all of the album, the mix is spot on.
The band do manage to take a musical breather on ‘Some Sympathy’, the nearest they come to a ballad. Neat slide playing seguing into a glorious chorus – for a debut album this is more like the sound of a band who are well into their recording career, such is their musical confidence and strong songwriting.
The future of high energy, blues based rock ‘n’ roll is safe in the hands of Tax The Heat. Play this loud and play it a lot. ****1/2
Review by Jason Ritchie
The latest Facebook Live session from Canadian singer-songwriter Josh Taerk
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It’s an Anniversary Show celebrating a year of Sunday Sessions.
Next session: Sunday 23 May, 21:00 GMT and 16:00 EST
David Randall presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sundays at 22:00 BST (GMT+1, repeated on Mondays and Fridays), when he invites listeners to ‘Assume The Position’. This show was first broadcast on 18 April 2021 and includes the Top 10 albums at www.getreadytorock.com for that week.
UK Blues Broadcaster of the Year (2020) Pete Feenstra presents his weekly Rock & Blues Show on Tuesday at 19:00 ( BST, GMT+1) as part of a five hour blues rock marathon “Tuesday is Bluesday at GRTR!”. The show is repeated on Wednesdays at 22:00, Fridays at 20:00). This show was first broadcast 20 April 2021.
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Featured Albums w/c 19 April 2021 (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 STEPHEN CRANE Kicks (AOR Heaven)
12:00-13:00 THE TREATMENT Waiting For Good Luck (Frontiers)
14:00-16:00 AMY SPEACE & THE ORPHAN BRIGADE – There Used To Be Horses Here (Proper)
Power Plays w/c 3 May 2021 (Mon-Fri)
THE COLD STARES In The Night Time (Mascot)
NATHALIE MIRANDA Battle Scars (You Won’t Forget My Name) (indie)
RAMES Eleanor Street (indie)
THE STEADY LETTERS The Blue (indie)
CRIMSON RIOT Shatter (Golden Robot Records)
THUNDERMOTHER You Can’t Handle Me (AFM Records)
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