Metalville [Eelease date 22.05.20]
Released originally in 2003, this was always going to be a tough gig for Foghat. Slide guitar wizard Rod Price had recently left, and then they were knocked for six by the untimely death of their mainstay and inspiration Lonesome Dave Paveret.
Not that Bryan Bassett and newest recruit Charlie Huhn were slouches. Huhn had come from Ted Nugent and most recently a covers/tribute version of Humble Pie.
Foghat’s audience at the time were divided. There were diehards who were ecstatic about their aim to “rock on”, but equally there were many who found the band playing refried boogie and going through the motions of somewhat turgid rock
Foghat were a British band, born out of the embers of Savoy Brown, a critically acclaimed outfit in the late 60s / early 70s. Foghat could well be considered as the archetypal British band playing American rock, and they went on the have wide success mainly in North America, with several gold / platinum albums but without denting inside the Top 20 singles charts.
They were signed to the famous Bearsville records in Woodstock country, a label started by Bob Dylan’s Manager Albert Grossman.
Back to 2003, and the remaining Foghat original members consist of drummer and bassist Roger Earl and Tony Stevens, although frankly Foghat were never known for their driving rhythm section – so the band were once more searching for an identity.
They chose to go with an album of self penned songs. These turn out to be good competent rock songs, although without being real killers. Likewise there’s fine competent playing throughout, without it ever feeling like anyone’s life is on the line.
“I’m a Rock n Roller” lifts the album, as do the blues based songs like “I Feel Fine” but Foghat’s style is largely mid tempo, and I guess that’s why it’s a challenge to sound all the time like it really really matters.
Foghat have endured. They still have a solid base of fans.
Put this down as one of those transitional albums!
Review by Iain McGonigal
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Power Plays w/c 8 August 2022 (Mon-Fri)
BORN LOST Take Time (Mouthpiece) (Revolver Records)
JAIME KYLE Driving With The Brakes On (Conquest Music)
SCARLET DORN Born To Suffer (SPV Recordings)
HOLDING ABSENCE Coffin (Sharptone Records)
TYRANNOSAURUS NEBULOUS Get Some (Echoed Past Records)
KROOKED TONGUE When The Beaches Bleed (indie)
SKYPILOT Knifed On The Beach (The Distortion Project)
Featured Albums w/c 8 August (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 LESSMAN VOSS Rock Is Our Religion (Atomic Fire Records)
12:00-13:00 H.E.A.T. Force Majeure (earMUSIC)
14:00-16:00 THE SLAMBOVIAN CIRCUS OF DREAMS A Very Unusual Head (indie)
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