Formed around the Dio/Holy Diver axis of Vivian Campbell, Vinnie Appice and the now sadly departed Jimmy Bain, Last In Line could easily have been one of those self-indulgent allstar bands that trade on reputation alone.
Instead, their first two albums were genuinely great, noisily split the difference between hard rock and heavy metal, and saluted their former boss with a virtuoso flourish. Six years on from second album Jericho feels looser and grittier than either of its predecessors, with singer Andrew Freeman audibly upping his game.
Dominated by hard-hitting rockers like breathless opener Not Today Satan and Ghost Town, Jericho also has room for the hazy fumes of psychedelia, in both Freeman’s harmonised vocals and an occasional but strong resemblance to prime King’s X.
The doom-meets-AOR sprawl of Bastard Son and the neck-threatening hurtle of Hurricane Orlaugh are the obvious standouts, but class runs through this like a stick of (unusually thunderous) rock.