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King Kobra: King Kobra

There’s still plenty of venom in those old fangs.

Drawing a veil over 2001’s Hollywood Trash, an ill-judged attempt to add a modern spin to the band’s hard rock formula, to all intents and purposes King Kobra are back after an absence of 22 years.

Originals Carmine Appice, David Michael-Philips, Mick Sweda and Johnny Rod have added ex-Rough Cutt/Quiet Riot frontman Paul Shortino as replacement for Unruly Child’s Mark (now Marcie) Free.

Shortino has one of the finest, huskiest, bluesy hard rock voices in the business, and although a third of these 12 songs were preserved in mothballs since the mid-80s, the Kobra despatch them with an unexpected fire and urgency.

Rock This House and Tear Down The Walls have more in common with the band’s chunky debut album Ready To Strike and the Johnny Edwards (Foreigner)-fronted KK III than the radio-friendly Thrill Of A Lifetime, but this is worth purchasing for the excellence of Shortino’s contribution alone.