Onetime thrash hopefuls Flotsam And Jetsam are now known mainly as the band who lost their hotshot bassist to Metallica. Within months of Flotsam issuing their widely praised 1986 debut Doomsday For The Deceiver, Jason Newsted replaced the late Cliff Burton, leaving his bandmates to forge ahead without him.
Their search for a new identity has taken more than one wrong turn. With 2010’s The Cold, however, it seemed as though they’d finally struck a chord.
Although Ugly Noise has a similar sheen and emphasis on mature Metallica-meets-Queensrÿche moodiness, it lacks its predecessor’s vitality and verve. Some of this may be down to lineup changes, but too many of the songs appear to be holding back. Lose three or four of them and you’d gain something. A solid but unspectacular effort.