Album Reviews
Band: Bulletrain

Title: Start Talking

Label: AOR Heaven

  

Hailing from Helsingborg, Sweden, Bulletrain formed in 2006 with two main members, guitarist Mattias Persson and drummer Jonas Tillheden, quickly joined by vocalist Robert Lindell, bassist Tim Svalo and guitarist Adam Borvall, who was then replaced by Robin Bengtsson. Releasing an E.P. in 2007 ('Johnny Gone Bad'), things started to look rosey in the B-Train camp, but as usual, things don't always go as planned, and over the next few years, band members came and went and the idea of any debut album seemed to be slipping from the band's grasp. Fortunately in 2013, a settled line-up of Sebastian Sundberg (vocals), Mattias Persson (Lead G), Robin Bengtsson (G), Jonas Tillheden (D) and Niklas Mansson (B), finally entered the studio to put the finishing touches to what we have in 'Start Talking', released via AOR Heaven, and it was worth the wait for these blistering 12 songs!

You can tell straight from the thumping opener, 'Nothing But Trouble', that there are influences from the 80's rock scene, Skid Row for one (but without the arsey singer!), and as 'All For One' kicks in with it's swirling solo, dare you not want MORE, MORE, MORE! This bugger races along on a riff/drum/chant-fest that will have you pressing the 'repeat' button time and time again! 'Things can only get better' it was stated in song-terms, wasn't it? Well, with the Van Halen-esque 'Dark Days (Dark Nights) and the scratched vinyl intro'd rock monster 'From The Bottom Of My Heart', it certainly does! Both are awash with soaring solos on the 6-strings and the odd bad language (tut, tut!), but even this early, one thing has made an impression, and that's the perfect harmonies that this band are capable of, even as they rock the socks off you, and not something a lot of bands are truly known for or actually can do when needed.

A 'softer' side is shown on a couple of ballad-types, 'Even With My Eyes Closed', straight out of Def Leppard's 'Hysteria' territory due to those gentle layered harmonies, and the calming acoustic intro'd 'Bad Blood (Out Of Love)' which does pick up the tempo eventually, but still holds onto the melodic side of the fence. Still, this lot seem to be wanting to be hard-arsed rockers, and they get those songs coming hard 'n fast, 'Out Of Control' having everything Guns n' Roses had in their 'Appetite..' days, blasting, dirty riffs and Sundberg spitting out his vocals in his best punk Axl mode, then 'Dicing With Death' matching it then some more in a crazy whirlwind of musical mayhem! There's still moments of normality to hold onto, shown in the Lep-styled 'Take Me To The Sun', that could well have you doing your best Joe Elliot Dad-dancing in front of the mirror (!), and 'Phantom Pain', which is more like what we've been hearing from the Work of Art stable of late, an easier on the ear radio-friendly hit in the making. No surprises though as the brash, louder tracks have the final say on this album, 'Start Talking' and the rumbling-bass beast 'Joanna's Secret' just making sure that we all know that this band can really rock!

Bulletrain, for all they've been through over the years, have finally conquered those demons that held them down and delivered one fine rock album that the connoisseurs of 80's Rock Music will no doubt take to their bosom and hail it as the new Messiah!!

Review by: Robb Baldwin

Tracklisting:

1. Nothing But Trouble
2. All For One
3. Dark Days (Dark Nights)
4. From The Bottom Of My Heart
5. Even With My Eyes Closed
6. Start Talking
7. Out Of Control
8. Phantom Pain
9. Bad Blood (Out Of Love)
10. Dicing With Death
11. Take Me To The Sun  
12. Joanna's Secret

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