Shylock are a band that I first discovered when I received their 'Devolution' album to review. I was impressed then but the band have definitely raised the bar with this new album, and once again Germany had a Melodic Hard Rock band to be proud of.
'RockBuster' takes over from where 'Devolution' left off with the vocals of Matthias Schenk once again heading the bands sound, along with the guitars Johannes Amrhein and Michael Bayer. A band wouldn’t be a band without a solid foundation of a rhythm section and Shylock have the concrete firmly laid with the thumping bass lines courtesy of Bernhard Schwingenstein and the skin booming drumming of Achm Thiergartner.
As I said this album takes over where the last left off and opens with the excellent ‘Damn Good’ with Matthias Schenk unleashing a fine vocal while the rest of the band lay down a hard rocking musical entrée to feast upon, with the twin guitars of Michael Bayer and Johannes Amrhein especially watering the appetite.
The album continues to impress with ‘Down’, again a great guitar track only this time with a little heavier edge to it. It took a while for me to find who this song reminded me of, but then it came to me like a bolt from above, yes the new Stryper album, this song is in similar vein but without the religious overtones. Again a great Hard Rock song.
I loved the bands previous outing 'Devolution' but this album blows that one totally out of the water. There is so much variety on this album that it’s a joy to listen to whatever mood your in, from the gritty hard rockers to the more gentle melodic songs, this one has it all.
One of the tracks of the album for me has to be ‘Rumours’, a real bouncy slice of Melodic Rock again Schenk’s vocals shining through the driven guitars. For those with a gentle disposition then check out ‘Sunshine vs. Rain’, a track that reminds me of Bonfire’s gentle rock ballads, maybe it’s the hint of a German accent that makes Schenk sound like Claus Lessmann on this one.
It's back to the rockier stuff with another of my favourites of the album the heavier tones of ‘Just For U’ are just superb. A real meat and bones rocker for sure. We keep to the heavier side of things with the grinding guitars on ‘Much’ before the thumping bass tones of my favourite track off the album the excellent ‘Rose Of Cairo’.
Coming a close second is ‘Rose of Cairo’, as track of the album has to be ‘Strong’. Again with a hint of that Bonfire vibe going on, then the album takes on a punky rock feel with the modern rocker ‘Somebody Else’, showing the band can mix it up big style. This one has a touch of sleaze about it, it could easily have been written by one of those Scandinavian sleaze acts that I love so much.
The band turn on the style with the last few tracks of the album starting things off is ‘The Moment’ a mid tempoed rocker, then it's ‘We Are’. Although a touch heavier than its predecessor, it’s melody rich a song that could have easily come out of Gotthards stable. The album then closes off with ‘Wrong Planet’. Once again a guitar fuelled rock that wraps up what is a real corker of an album that is suitably entitled ‘RockBuster’.
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