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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Scoti*Slate

Good Fight

Review by Gary Hill

This is quite an interesting set. It’s very modern overall, but there are so many classic sounds here that it’s incredible. The range of sounds is pretty wide, but it always manages to rock. Not only have these guys created some excellent songs, but they’ve performed them extremely well, too. If you like music that’s hard rocking, accessible, classic and yet fresh, you must check this out. It’s great stuff.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Good Fight Intro

This short instrumental introduction is based on an acoustic guitar melody, but with other layers of sound completing it. Overall, it feels like a pretty and rather intricate progressive rock number.

Good Fight
This powers out with a smoking hot, rather funky hard rock sound. The vocal performance is extremely impassioned and strong and the cut has such a great groove. This is an exceptional good piece.
Do Ya
The riff driving this one somehow feels familiar. Overall, the song reminds me a bit of Garbage (the band, not the stuff). Mind you, Garbage with a male singer. It’s another killer hard rocker.
Sprockets
There is almost an electronic rock texture here. Somehow that’s appropriate because the title makes me think of the spoof show from “Saturday Night Live.” They drop it back down for the verses. This cut gets a parental advisory and the harder rocking sections make me think of Nine Inch Nails or Rammstein.
Brightlife
The bouncy, powered up jam that serves as the backdrop here is classic and a little funky. The tune is another classy one. It’s modern, but has some retro leanings in the mix. There’s a rap mid-track lending an interesting flavor. At times on this one I’m reminded of Lenny Kravitz quite a bit.
Little Head Fred
The wall of vocals that opens this is classy. This is another cut with a parental advisory. The hard rocking sound that enters after this extended introduction is very much a modern element. This is a screaming number that works quite well.
G On G
The riff that drives this makes me think a bit of Aerosmith or even Led Zeppelin. The cut is another hard rocker that’s quite tasty. It’s got a rather psychedelic edge to parts of the chorus. Parts of the tune feel a lot like something Guns ‘N Roses might do to my ears. It’s also got a real classic rock vibe.
Fanatic
A somewhat funky jam, this is modern and classy. It’s got some minor parental advisory material in it, too. It’s modern in lyrical content in addition to the music. Lenny Kravitz, with a more modern, harder edge would be a good reference point. There’s a cool mellower movement in the midst of this thing. The section where it builds back out is particularly noteworthy, too.
What If
A mellower, picked guitar mode opens this. As it gets more energy it feels a bit like Rush for  a moment. They drop it down to mellower sounds for the verse. They turn it heavier later. They alternate this between the more sedate sections and that harder rocking, almost metallic, movement.
Dirty Birdy
A bluesy acoustic guitar riff opens this one. Then they electrify it and it’s classy riff driven hard rock. It does get a bit of a parental advisory on the lyrics. This is a classic sounding rocker that could have fit well in the 1970s.
Magic Number
I love the bass line on this thing. The song feels really familiar. It’s got a real funky vibe. It’s quite modern with a retro basis to it. It almost has an electronic dance music element to it.
Anywhere Via Nowhere
This is very much a classic rock styled piece with some great guitar work in the mix. Still, there are modern musical elements, too. The funk is heard on this piece, as well. I really love the melodic guitar solo section on this thing. It’s a thing of beauty.
Twilight Zone
Here is a cover of the Golden Earring song. It’s got enough of the original along with enough of the Scoti*Slate sound to make it a pretty intriguing rendition. I like it a lot.

 

 
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