The Winery Dogs pools a trio of virtuoso musicians renowned for decades of experience. Drummer Mike Portnoy was with Dream Theater and Adrenaline Mob, Billy Sheehan played bass with David Lee Roth among many others and guitarist Richie Kotzen replaced Paul Gilbert
But if those names cause you to expect one big muso wank, think again. This debut album offers a vague but knowing nod to 60s icons like Cream, Led Zeppelin and Hendrix.
Above all, what makes it so successful are the sugar-sweet vocals of Richie Kotzen, equally persuasive on the smooth yet hard-rocking Elevate, We Are One, Six Feet Deeper and the Alice In Chains-esque Time Machine as during mellower moments such as the shimmering excellence of Damaged or The Dying. The Dogs’ bollocks.