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Tremonti – All I Was

| 17 September 2012 | 1 Reply

Label: FRET 12

Release Date: July 17, 2012

Rating: 9/10

Reviewed by: ToddStar

I wasn’t sure what to think of this disc when my pal Kevin sent it my way.  I really liked Creed in the day, but I always thought they waited too long to try and recapture the glory and fame they had their first go around.  I have dug Alter Bridge since their inception, having been at their first show in the Detroit area years ago at Clutch Cargos in Pontiac.  Having made these caveats, I am always leery of a solo record from any member of a band I have enjoyed at one time or another.  Well Kev, this first spin is for you…

“Leave It Alone” immediately lets you know who one of the key writers behind both the aforementioned bands is.  This song is steeped in a heavy guitar sound and solos that jump from the speakers, in their entire ping and squeal glory.  The most pleasant surprise here is that Tremonti can actually sing.  “So You’re Afraid” is heavier and faster than most other tracks Mark has been associated with.  The guitar work is top notch, as would be expected from a guitarist, but the songs are solid in foundation and he has surrounded himself with great players on this disc.  “Wish You Well” comes along and I can’t keep my head from banging.  There isn’t anything Tremonti has recorded that has been this heavy.  Welcome to heavy metal Mark – you are a welcome addition.  The guitars and bass line are so heavy, I am sure most Creed and A/B fans are wondering what happened.  “Brains” comes along and keeps the metal head in me very happy.  Again, the guitar work is tremendous without being overbearing.  I really like how the vocals seem to compliment the mood created by the instruments.

“The Things I’ve Seen” sounds like a Creed ballad in the beginning, but I think Tremonti’s voice carries more feeling than Stapp did on most tracks.  The guitar work is great on this track and really stands out without screaming for attention.  “You Waste Your Time” picks the pace up and takes us almost into thrash territory.  I really dig this tune and its tempo changes.  The head banging is constant on this track.  Mark really went back to the music he claims influenced him and he turned the heavy knob up a few notched from his previous recorded efforts.  “New Way Out” has that familiar Tremonti guitar sound and could have been recorded by either of Mark’s previous bands, but I am so glad he saved this one for himself.  This has single written all over it.  “Giving Up” cranks back into heavier territory, and is a welcome track.  I think this one would go over very well live.  The guitars are heavy and drums are even heavier.  This song should please most metal heads.

“Proof” has the vocals we have come to recognize through out this disc.  I love the vocal quality Mark brings to the disc.  So many guitarists set out to express themselves and ruin tracks by warbling over them.  “All I Was” is a very heavy track that could have been written for Alter Bridge.  I love the way Mark plays and sings here, but the song almost screams for Myles to put his flair on it.  Not many guitarists today have mastered this sound the way Tremonti has.  “It Doesn’t Matter” is another heavy track that benefits from Mark’s guitar AND vocal abilities.  He flexes his vocal range a little and the song is better because of it.  “Decay” is the final track presented here.  This is a great song to end on, as it leaves us wanting more.  The song could be another single from the disc.  I am hoping there are more songs like this up Mark’s musical sleeve.

Don’t get caught up in the Creed and Alter Bridge categories when you are pondering picking this one up.  This is better, in a different way, from anything else Tremonti has played on.  I am looking forward to more from Mark in the future, whether it is in the form of a solo disc or AB… as long as he is strumming that lead guitar and throwing us all a bone by singing a track or two for us.


Category: CD Reviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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