Album review: TRUCKER DIABLO – Tail End Of A Hurricane

Self Release [Release date 07.05.21]

Given the past year it feels like we are all at the tail end of a hurricane with a trail of devastation behind us but blue skies up ahead. Who better to take us there then than the big truck fuelled on high octane rock ‘n roll and firing on all cylinders?

If you are looking for an upbeat, full throttle return to heady days of big riffs and sweaty gigs then Trucker Diablo are just the band you need. Tom Harte and the guys have been busy during the lockdown and have produced 13 tracks to help your mental well being and take you to a very happy place.

Opening track ‘BTKOR’ does what it says on the tin, that big truck keeps on rollin’ and it takes no prisoners. Built on a huge riff that steamrollers anything in its path you are left in no doubt that the boys are back and they mean business! ‘I Am Still Alive’ is a joyous tune that will have you singing along with a smile on your face. Big melodies and even bigger choruses are the order of the day and the guys deliver by the lorry load.

Anyone of a certain age (guilty as charged) will relate to the next track ‘Rock Kids Of The 80’s’. With a trail back through some of the bands and tracks of the decade’ it will have even the most hardened harking back with misty eyed reminiscence. This song is also set to be a live favourite with a good opportunity for a bit of crowd participation.

‘Don’t Hold On To Hate’ and ‘Set The Night On Fire’ continue the hard rocking soundtrack with excellent guitar work from Tom and Simon Haddock. The album title track then blows in and takes us on a whirlwind trip including a full-on mid-section complete with a great guitar solo.

The lyrics of ‘Insects’ cleverly cover the subject of feeling isolated, alone and the curse of (anti)social media. The refrain of ‘it’s ok not to be ok’ is a strong message to get out there, especially in the current climate, and the guys do an admirable job here.

The pace slows a bit on ‘The Edge Of Tonight’ before the brakes are further applied for the opening of ‘The Trade’. The pressure is quickly reapplied to the accelerator though and the riffs are soon back to cruising speed. ‘Burning Heart’ then rocks solidly on a base of drums and bass provided by Terry Crawford and Tim McGurk respectively.

The big truck then pulls a bit of a DeLorean ‘Back To The Future’ move which transports us back to the late 60’s with ‘Woodstock To Vietnam’. This track looks at the different perspectives of American teenage life during that period from the viewpoint of two friends whose lives took very different paths.

‘Slow Dance’ lightens the mood again with its straightforward rock before we are taken on a final journey to the coast, or possibly beyond, with ‘Bury The Ocean’. The riffs on this one are like relentless waves pounding the shoreline as the hurricane hits shore and takes you on one hell of a ride.

Trucker Diablo have used their lockdown time well and have produced an album that is uplifting and hard rocking in equal measure. The band’s previous albums have shown that their love of harmony and melody coupled with huge riffs is a winning formula and here they have captured the spirit that has prevailed over the past year into 13 tracks.

‘The Big Truck Keeps On Rolling’ should be a metaphor for the resilience of society in the face of the pandemic and this juggernaut shows no signs of stopping!  *****

Review by Dave Wilson

Josh Taerk’s latest Sunday Session was streamed on Sunday 20 March 2022 at 21:00 GMT (16:00 EST). Josh’s next session is Sunday 22 May.

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David Randall presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sundays at 22:00 GMT, repeated on Mondays and Fridays), when he invites listeners to ‘Assume The Position’. This show was first broadcast on 8 May 2022.

UK Blues Broadcaster of the Year (2020 and 2021 Finalist) Pete Feenstra presents his weekly Rock & Blues Show on Tuesday at 19:00 GMT 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 3 May 2022.

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Power Plays w/c 16 May 2022 (Mon-Fri)
FLOYA The Hymn (Arising Empire)
VEXES The Dream Disease (indie)
NEAR DUSK The Way It Goes (Iron Head Records)
IN SEARCH OF SUN Make Me Crazy (indie)
WALLNER VAIN Deceive Her (indie)
MARATON Non-Euclidean Heart (Indie Recordings)

Featured Albums w/c 16 May (Mon-Fri)
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12:00-13:00 FOZZY Boombox (Mascot)
14:00-16:00 MICHAEL McDERMOTT St.Paul’s Boulevard (Pauper Sky Records)

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