Album Reviews
Band: Cranston

Title: Cranston

Label: Rock Company

AAh, me owld marra Phil Vincent makes a return to these ears, teaming up with Rock Icon Paul Sabu to form a new outfit Cranston, and on this self-titled debut album, make no mistake, it'll blow your socks off better than those hard mints off that TV advert! To say both stars have 'been round the block' could be taken as an insult, but none is meant in that quote, in fact, it is supposed to mean that they both have kept on going, even if things didn't quite work out at times, keeping themselves busy no matter what.  So it's great to see the two come together now, and judging by the opening Rock groover 'Long, Long Way To Go', they haven't lost any of their passion when it comes to 'giving it welly'! 

This is a storming track that rattles the speakers to the very edge of them crumbling before your eyes, then as B.F. D'Ercole lays into the drumkit on 'You Outta Know', and the slightest hint of Rock mayhem takes over, you soon realise there's a possibility there'll be no ballads here! 'See You On The Other Side' continues on that route, Sabu's keys playing a major part within the song, Vincent's raspy vocals adding to the hard-nosed vibe throughout, before what I can only describe as The Eagles going berserk comes along on 'Trouble Ahead', because the wee hook that needles itself in and out reminds me of  'Life In The Fast Lane', though THAT band would never let their hair down and Rock out like Cranston do here, and I mean ROCK OUT!!

Vincent shows why he's thought of as such a good singer by some as he belts out his lyrics to the melodic 'hey, hey'd' monster 'Fallen', Sabu thrashing out the licks like the World will end soon, and again the drums getting a right old hammering by B.F., all taken onto the next crushing track, with guest cowbell (I poop you not!).  Very 80's sounding, like Motley/WASP/M.S.G. being thrown into the pot, and out comes 'Queen Of The Pain', with no let up until the final squawk of the keys disappears! 

'Let It Go' harks back even further, more towards the 70's as it's Purplesque keys lend a healing hand to your slightly damaged eardrums (by now!), and even the lighter riffs lean towards that era too, but beware, dear listener, just around the corner comes a 'wolf in sheep's clothing' as the saying goes.  'Sea Of Madness' creeps along on a bed of light guitars, keys and layered harmonies that only the snappy drums interrupt, giving you a feeling of 'aah, respite', and it is in a way because this track is the closest to a power ballad as you'll get here, but before you realise it, you've been duped and in crashes the guitar driven modern rocker 'Hangin' On' and your head and feet are away again, stomping and nodding away like Travis Bickle on a really bad day!  

Just when you think that's the last of the hard 'n heavy stuff, up pops, or should that be, in storms the final track 'Unwanted', which, apart from the assault on the drums, the track is quite bare, on the same lines as Queen's 'We Will Rock You', only with a hell of a lot more venom to it!  Even the guitars sound like they've come from the most frightening place imaginable, the keys drilling into your consciousness like some demonic miner at work.  EEUUPHHH, turn the landing light on when I go to bed, please! 

On evidence of this hard/melodic debut, it shows that these two enduring stars are a match made in Rock Heaven, so hopefully it won't be the last we hear of Cranston, and you never know, maybes they can freak the Beejezuz out of us even more on their next album the way they have with track 10 here. Mammy...!!!!


Review by: Robb Baldwin



1.  Long, Long Way To Go
2. You Outta Know 
3. See You On The Other Side 
4. Trouble Ahead 
5. Fallen 
6. Queen Of The Pain 
7. Let It Go
8. Sea Of Madness
9. Hangin' On 
10. Unwanted 


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