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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Rose Tattoo

Blood Brothers – Special Tour Edition

Review by Gary Hill

I remember this band from way back when but I never really listened to them much. If this disc is any indication, that’s my loss. The music on here is very much in a retro “classic rock meets blues in a hard edged pudding” style. Probably the closest comparison would be to Nazareth, but these guys come closer to metal than that. Mentioning AC/DC would also be appropriate. Whoever you want to compare them to, though, you need to pick up this album if you like classic hard rock. It just doesn’t get much better than this.

This particular edition includes a bonus DVD, meaning it’s a healthy dosage of “more bang for the buck.” That disc has a concert from 2006 and a TV interview.  The interview is quite cool and is more than an hour in length. The concert is also in that general area in terms of length. The sound is good and it looks good, too. This is really quite a good DVD if sold by itself. As a bonus it’s incredible.
This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2009  Volume 1 at lulu.com/strangesound.
Track by Track Review
Black Eyed Bruiser
This pounds right in with a hard-edged grind. The intro here feels to me like a cross between Motley Crue and Guns N Roses. It’s got some spoken words over the top. When the real vocals are delivered I’m reminded more of Nazareth – or even Saxon. This is a real screamer and a great way to start the disc off in style.
Slipping Away
A cool fast paced riff that reminds me of Van Halen kicks this one off. They strip it down to just the rhythm section for the first vocals. When they power out with a riff after that I’m reminded of AC/DC. This is definitely a smoking classic rock based jam. It’s hard edged and tasty.
Once In a Lifetime
Screaming hard bluesy rock starts this off in a noisy bit of coalescing sounds. They take it out into an Aerosmith-like riff. When the vocals enter comparisons to Nazareth are again on the mind. These guys just keep the new killer klassics coming. There’s some killer slide guitar on this.
1854
While other songs here have had some definite Nazareth leanings, I would say that if you played this for people with some knowledge of these bands and told them this is Nazareth, they might very well believe you. It’s another killer tune. 
City Blues
They slow it down on this one. It’s a great crunchy grind. There’s more slide guitar here, but perhaps not as much as the title would make one think you might get. 
Sweet Meat
A bit more stripped down in texture, this is another smoking slab of bluesy hard rock with classic sounds. The slide guitar solo on this is one of the bluesier bits on show here. 
Man About Town
Perhaps a bit more metallic than some of the other stuff, this cut again has some AC/DC in the mix, but I can still hear bits of Nazareth. Probably Angus Young and the guys are a much bigger leaning, though. The riff really reminds me of something from Powerage or Let There Be Rock
Creeper
There’s a killer classic rock riff on this and the vocals have an interesting “pre-echo” sort of effect. The number just has such a great texture and is quite probably the best piece on show here. There are bluesy elements here and this one could almost be lumped into the category of heavy metal. 
Stand Over Man
Frantic and tasty, this is another that reminds me quite a bit of AC/DC. There’s probably equal parts Nazareth on this, though. 
Nothing to Lose
They’re not breaking any molds here, but this is just another scorching example of the group’s killer sound.
Lubricated
This is faster and rawer than anything else here. It’s almost punk rock in nature. It’s a good tune, but I think there might have been better choices to close the disc on a high note.
 
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