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SERPENTINE PATH
‘Disfigured Colossus’
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BLACK ANVIL
'Eventide'
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'Erased By The Dark'
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21OCTAYNE
'The Heart (Save Me)'
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Not Just Tits In A Corset: Celebrating Women In Metal
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HARDWARES

SNAKECHARMER

Snakecharmer

(Frontiers)

Reviewed by : Mark Gromen
Rating : 7.0

Any chance Mr. Coverdale will see the light, what with the new VOODOO CIRCLE album aping his classic (pre-MTV success) WHITESNAKE bluesy hard rock and now his former 70s bandmates releasing a platter of similarly minded material? Guitarist Micky Moody and bassist Neil Murray were alongside Coverdale for a half dozen studio albums, an Ep and live album, from ’78 to ’83 (although Murray stayed a bit longer). Add to that pedigree WISHBONE ASH guitarist Laurie Wisefield and THUNDER drummer/madman Harry James, on paper, one of the strongest blues-rock supergroups ever assembled (at least since the original ‘Snake). That said, the first sound heard, to open ‘My Angel’ is an acoustic guitar and then the voice of Chris Ousey (formerly of HEARTLAND / VIRGINIA WOLF, but otherwise unknown/dwarfed by his compatriots), before being joined by the whole band. WARNING: Don’t come here looking for umpteen versions of WHITESNAKE’s ‘Here I Go Again’ or ‘Still Of The Night’. This is a gentler sound, akin to mellow, other-side-of-the-pond classics like ‘Ain’t Gonna Cry No More’, ‘Walking In The Shadow Of The Blues’ and the original (Saints & Sinners version) of ‘Crying In The Rain’. Hammond organ greets and punctuates ‘Accident Prone’ throughout. The band hit their stride with a Hammond backed ‘To The Rescue’, which recalls 60s / 70s Brit rock (UFO, STONES, FACES) as well as their latter day doppelgangers: THE BLACK CROWES, et al. ‘Turn Of The Screw’ rides a similar vibe, albeit dancing to a quicker step. The later half (side two on vinyl) contains the more active material, with ‘Guilty As Charged’ about as rocking as it gets, although ‘Nothing To Loose’ and ‘Cover Me In You’ sport great solo spots. A little slide guitar (JAMES GANG?) on the ‘White Boy Blues’ bonus. Nice change of pace, but definitely not for every “metalhead.”



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