Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Dirty Dave Osti - Rare Tracks (CD)

Dirty Dave has previously released a couple of really great blues rock albums, so what good would actually a "rare tracks" compilation do? Well, quite a lot it seems. Rare Tracks proves to be a damn fine "could easily have been a legit" album. Consistent in both sound and style. It kicks off with the instrumental blues rocker Grooveyard Ride followed by the southern rock sounding Louisiana Outlaw with a bunch of cool slide licks and fitting raspy vocals. Blur The Lines kicks it into riff mode, with some cool bluesy sections. In The Wind kicks it up a notch in tempo, but both the riffs and the blues are still there. A cool instrumental tune, where my only critique would be that it actually does lack some vocals in the empty spots. Bastard is a cool acoustic number leading into another cool bluesy melodic semi-ballad. Up next is a kick-ass cover of ZZ Top's El Diablo, from the sadly overlooked Tejas album. Without going into each track, let me just say, even though this is "just" a compilation of leftover tracks, it's a damn good one!
Janne Stark

Label: Grooveyard Records
Country: USA
Year: 2017

The Quill - Born From Fire (CD)

Swedish retro rockers The Quill have gone through various styles and line-ups. Now they have returned bringing back singer Magnus Ekwall, flanked by guitarist Christian Carlsson, bass player Roger Nilsson and drummer Jolle Atlagic. The new effort kicks off with Stone Believer and immediately Black Sabbath and in particular Zero The Hero comes to mind. No, it's not plagiarism, only very similar in feel. This is my favorite Quill line-up and they do not disappoint! Snake Charmer Woman proves the opener was no fluke. This one kicks it up a few notches in speed, but the heaviness prevails. Ghosthorse is more Sabbath than Sabbath. It's a track I think Iommi would wish he wrote today! What a killer!! Keep It Together takes it down a notch, starting off with naked vocals and Univibe-drenched guitar. It then leads us into Sabbath's Snowblind territory. There's not a weak track on the entire album, the mix is fat, full and fucking crushing, the band sounds better than ever and this is one kick-ass release you should not miss out on! 
Janne Stark

Label: Metalville
Country: Sweden
Year: 2017

Universal Hippies - Mother Nature Blues (CD)

Busy boy Stavros (Super VintageFreerock Saints, Hard Driver) is at it again. This time delivering a bunch of instrumental tracks under the Universal Hippies moniker. I'm not a huge fan of instrumental albums, I shall admit, but this is some pretty cool shit. Opener Redemption Day is a cool, melodic thing with highly tasteful guitar harmonies and great melodies. Enjoyable indeed! Homo Sapiens continues in the same vein and I get a feel of Wishbone Ash meets 70s Epitaph, with some bad ass riffing thrown in. Stavros plays outstandingly tasteful. No overplaying, no meaningless shredding, but melodic soloing, great feel, great arrangements and really great songs. There's not a bad track on the album and I must say I really love every part of it from the songs to the performances to the songs. Awesome!
Janne Stark


Label: Grooveyard
Year: 2017
Country: Greece