SMITH KOTZEN (BMG)
Adrian Smith (Iron Maiden) and Richie Kotzen (Poison, Mr Big, Winery Dogs) have pitted their combined guitaring and songwriting skills to fashion nine tracks of pure unadulterated hard rock heaven. ****1/2
Review by David Randall
THE DUST CODA Mojo Skyline (Earache Records)
You can hear influences of Led Zeppelin amongst others, with Drake’s vocals reminiscent of Plant in his heyday on ‘I Have Been Waiting’ (magnificent heavy bassline and thumping riffs) and ‘Rolling’ – the Dust Coda have certainly earned their place in the new wave of classic rock hall of fame – long may it continue, these are exciting times for new rock music! *****
Review by Karen Clayton
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
THE JOHN WILLIAMS SYNDICATE Out Of The Darkness (Wulfrun Records)
‘Out Of Darkness’ counterbalances poppy familiarity with stylistic diversity. Everything is consistently shot through with glistening harmonies, poppy hooks and the primacy of the song.
It’s one of those albums that finds you muttering to yourself: I’m not really into pop-rock, but I like this very much. ****
Review by Pete Feenstra
IAN McNABB Utopian (indie)
Double albums often see artists come unstuck with either a lack of decent songs to fill four sides/two discs, or indulging too much at melody’s expense. No need to worry on ‘Utopian’ as Ian McNabb shows no sign of dropping his high quality control on his songs. Fans will love this and if you have yet to enjoy the musical world of Mr McNabb here is a perfect opportunity to do so.
An album of the year with ease. ****1/2
Review by Jason Ritchie
TIMO TOLKKI’S AVALON The Enigma Birth (Frontiers)
A handful of tracks lift the album into the world of Tolkki’s grandiose, pomp peppered metal. ‘Truth’, ‘Another Day’, ‘Beauty And War’ are theatrical pieces, punctuated by rushing, thick cut riffs, speeding, dancing keyboards and a pounding percussive beat.
Tolkki once again shows his command of orchestral and chorale arrangements … rhythms sway, strings swoop, and harmonies soar. One minute, the music is delicate and restrained, the next it’s blazing with passionate vocals, most notably from Jake E and Marina LaTorraca. ****1/2
Review by Brian McGowan
Josh Taerk’s latest Sunday Session was streamed on Sunday 17 July.
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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 24 July 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 26 July 2022.
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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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