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CD REVIEW: THE DEFIANTS – The Defiants

| 30 April 2016 | Reply

Promo Image

Label: Frontiers Music s.r.l.

Release Date: April 15, 2016

Rating: 8.5/10

Reviewed by: Todd “Toddstar” Jolicoeur

I always dug Danger Danger – I have favorite songs from both of the vocalists that fronted the band, but the backbone – bassist Bruno Ravel and guitarist Rob Marcello – apparently created that infectious sound we all came to know and love, as evidenced by the melodic rock DNA tossed all over the debut from these two plus Danger Danger vocalist Paul Laine.  “Intro (Carillon’s Theme)” kicks the disc off, but all it really does is delay the rock for a little more than a minute.  Once “Love And Bullets” starts up, we are transported back to the heyday of melodic hair metal and the classic DD sound.  The guitars are full, the bass thumping, and the vocals soaring.  This song sets the pace and bar for the rest of the disc.  “Waiting On A Heartbreak” brings a ballad-like groove to the disc without slowing the tempo or lessening the intensity of the disc.  The catchy chorus props up the track between verses.  “Lil’ Miss Rock ‘N’ Roll” brings some swagger and fun to the disc.  The lyrical content is tongue in cheek and takes anyone that remembers when Ravel, Marcello, and Laine were part of the late 80’s / early 90’s hair metal scene – full of stiletto heels and skin tight jeans, as referred to in the verse.  Be sure to check out the chorus for a nod to their collective past.  “Save Me Tonight” is the power ballad on the disc and Laine’s vocals carry this song through the verses and into the choruses, while Marcello’s guitars work together with keyboards played by Ravel.  “We All Fall Down” has a classic melodic hair metal riff wrapped around vocals that fell out of the late 80’s.  The cadence from the rhythm section keeps the song clicking away at a cool pace and gives the song a cool rock vibe.  The little guitar solos, pings, and squeals add to the fun.

“When The Lights Go Down” comes out swinging with big riffs and bigger vocals.  The chugging guitars swirl nicely in the mix with the bass and compliment the vocals, which Laine delivers with precision.  “Runaway” starts off with a different piano sound, but soon we are handed a cool riff that is pushed along by a pounding bass line from Ravel.  The verse is simple and stripped, while the chorus drops in with a full melodic vibe that gets the foot tapping and the head banging.  This is one of the catchiest tracks on the disc and features some of the best vocals on the disc.  “The Last Kiss” unfolds like a ballad but soon kicks into overdrive with a chugging riff, frantic bass work, and solid drums.  The song fits on this collection, but doesn’t standout against some of the other killer tracks.  “Take Me Back” has DD written all over it, from the gang-type vocals to the searing guitar parts that gel with keyboards.  The bass line that pushes along underneath the track keeps the tempo cruising along.  “That’s When I’ll Stop Loving You” is another power ballad like song, but the vocals take on a more melancholic sound and feel on this track than on the others on this disc, showing us another side of Laine and his voice.  Closer “Underneath The Stars” gives us charging drums, heavy handed bass lines, cool guitar effects and riffs, and solid vocals to wrap the disc nicely together.  The tempo of this track, as well as the texture of the other songs on this disc takes us back to the catalog these guys built back in the day, while keeping the sound fresh and modern.  Hopefully this isn’t a one-off project and we can enjoy and celebrate their collaboration once again.

Tracklisting: Intro (Carillon’s Theme) – Love And Bullets – When The Lights Go Down – Waiting On A Heartbreak – Runaway – Lil’ Miss Rock ‘N’ Roll – The Last Kiss – Save Me Tonight – Take Me Back – We All Fall Down – That’s When I’ll Stop Loving You – Underneath The Stars

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Todd ‘ToddStar’ Jolicoeur

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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