HardReviews
by Martin Popoff
www.martinpopoff.com

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Fresh Metal

GLYDER
Yesterday Today And Tomorrow (Steamhammer/SPV)

County Wicklow, Ireland is home base for this new (nu?) classic rock band, now onto their third album of meat and potatoes metal extremely satisfying in its picks of spots to touch down. A half dozen ties to the Thin Lizzy camp have folks comparing the band that way, but don't believe it: Glyder are way too complicated for that, recalling Vinnie Moore-era UFO, Tsunami, heavy Golden Earring, Mama's Boys (ha ha!), touches of power pop in the synths and melodies, Jorn, tourmates Thunder, regional comparatives The Answer, Them Crooked Vultures and QOTSA in filmy irony, and while we're there, Masters Of Reality, given vocalist and bassist Tony Cullen and his sonorous an' smooth Chris Goss delivery. Arrangements and fills and frequencies are perfectly hi-fi yet old school, and song to song, the guys try new rock moves out, two or three songs mild failures due to nose-wrinkling riffs. Yes, I dunno, but there is a nag slanting in from the side that this is young guys trying a bit to hard to earmark each page of the classic hard rock playbook, that same earnestness that has me diminishing the artistic accomplishments of The Answer, Black Stone Cherry and before them, Buckcherry.
Rating 7.5

EXTREME
Take Us Alive (Frontiers)

Call me old school, but to filter out, to concentrate, to peer into what should be the ultimate test, I'm reviewing the double CD here, not the DVD of the same name and look. Nuno says the fact that Take Us Alive was recorded in front of a hometown crown in Boston's House Of Blues is neither here nor there, as plans to do 'er in London and variously in Tokyo were floated as well. Couldn't have turned out worse, I don't think, as the production on this is flat, spare, box-y of drum to the point of distraction. No, to my mind, Extreme are a stadium rock act and I'd rather this was wallowing like Exit... Stage Left, Life/Live or Priest... Live! rather than firing with the electric scintillation of All The World's A Stage, Live And Dangerous or Unleashed In The East. Blasphemy, I know, but Extreme on the cheap just doesn't seem right, and this definitely sounds too guitary, midrangy or compressed (pick your definition of that term), essentially clubby and not plush as should be afforded this uniquely Queen-flairy post-hair metal config. I wouldn't blame lone non-classic lineup member, drummer Kevin Figueiredo, but someone didn't pay his mix enough attention. Subsequently, the acoustic stuff and the electric piano tones work well, and Nuno, in all his hyper-funked Kotzen-like guises never goes unheard. Highlights: 'Cupid's Dead', spirited and funky, and generally speaking, the fact that the set list is deep, offering new things and diversions, sampling both Punchline and Saudades De Rock, displaying the band's range as well as their Zeppelin-esque ambition.
Rating 7

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