Last week’s winners (by a country mile) were Ginger Wildheart and Ryan Hamilton with Fuck You Brain, followed by Def Leppard in second place and The Rolling Stones in third. But who does it for you this week? Returning legends or new voices? Have a listen, then place your vote at the foot of this page. Enjoy!
Deep Purple – Time For Bedlam
As Ritchie Blackmore moves on to further Rainbow-shaped pastures, the band with whom he made his name reveals the first glimpse of their new album. And it’s a bit good; a riff-crunching, keys-pounding display of Purple class. The lyrics are full of ragey social disenchantment (“sucking my milk from the venomous tit of the state” anyone?) and yes the opening/closing cyborg-y multitrack effect on Gillan’s vocals is a bit jarring, but essentially this is a very promising taste of what’s to come.
Steel Panther – Anything Goes
You have to wonder what the likes of Dokken, Poison etc make of Steel Panther; especially now, with the arrival of this new cut from upcoming album Lower The Bar. Anything Goes is probably more 80s than the actual 80s, with robust musical virtuosity (especially from guitarist Russ ‘Satchel’ Parrish) and any pretence at lyrical good taste catapulted gleefully out of the window.
Halestorm – Still Of The Night
If anyone from the current crop of younger hard rockers was going to tackle this Whitesnake classic, it had to be Halestorm. Lzzy Hale has already covered classics like You Shook Me All Night Long (live with Corey Taylor) and GN’R’s Out Ta Get Me (live with Slash), so we knew she had the goods to smash Still Of The Night – which she does, and then some.
Satan Takes A Holiday – The Beat
If Royal Republic were a bit dirtier, and listened to more punk, they might’ve sounded like this Swedish garage rock’n’roll trio. With an accompanying video starring a debauched muppet (created by Backyard Babies drummer Peder Carlsson and Björn “Papa Bear” Rallare), The Beat is one of the chirpiest yet filthiest things we’ve heard this week, and we like it very much.
Black Foxxes – My Wrecking Ball (Ryan Adams cover)
This was a perfect cover choice for Black Foxxes, who are rapidly gaining a reputation for raw, emotional performances. Frontman Mark Holley takes on My Wrecking Ball like a young Jeff Buckley with a solo, toned-down electric guitar and tear-jerking vocal. Lovely, cathartic stuff.
Them Evils – Untold
This Orange County cohort have clearly listened to a lot of Led Zeppelin and Queens Of The Stone Age, possibly with a bit of Jack White (at his more anarchic points) thrown in. Makes them sound pretty appealing doesn’t it? And rightly so, based on this fuzzy boot-stomper of a tune, which is doing our post-xmas party hangovers no favours but still sounds damn good.
Kings Of Leon – Find Me
Back in the day they were hairy kids peddling raw Southern-blues rock’n’roll. These days this family band from Tennessee are clean-shaven men playing stadium-fillers like Sex On Fire. Now, from seventh album Walls, they bring this brooding but punchy piece of 21st century rock. Through it all, singer Caleb Followill has kept his Southerner-than-thou pipes, which is oddly pleasing.
Tim Bowness – You Wanted To Be Seen
A pretty, progressive one to finish off here. Taken from Bowness’s upcoming album Lost In The Ghost Light, this soft, bittersweet number is easy on the ear but beautifully layered and interesting at the same time. Perfect for gazing pensively out the window with a mug of something hot and comforting.