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Vicious Rumors: Electric Punishment | FESTIVALPHOTO
 

Vicious Rumors: Electric Punishment

 Betyg

Review2829_VR_EP

Steamhammer/SPV/Playground

VICIOUS RUMORS has a long and winding history, far longer than the info sheet addresses. The ban d was formed way back in 1979 by guitarist and occasional vocalist Geoff Thorpe. More than 30 musicians have been involved over the years, including surprises like Brad Gillis (NIGHT RANGER), and greats like drummer Atma Anur, guitar wiz Vinnie Moore etc, etc. They debuted with the classic album “Soldiers of the Night” in 1985, and followed it up with the equally classic “Digital Dictator” in 1988. I discovered them around their eponymous album in 1990, and also the excellent “Welcome to the Ball” in 1992, before they were off my radar again. The band has achieved 14 live and studio albums all in all, but I didn´t quite find their well-known melodic feeling after the first four albums, with the doubt of 1994´s “Word of Mouth”, which I´ve never heard. Latter day albums have all been too hard a not melodic enough for me. I am hoping for a new “Don´t Wait for Me” from Geoff, guitarist Thean Rasmussen, bass player Stephen Goodwin, vocalist Brian Allen and drummer Larry Howe.

Opener “I Am the Gun” gives no such hopes. There might be a dash of THIN LIZZY in the refrain but the refrain in itself is not suitable for an opener. I get a bit more excited about “Black X List”, as the guitar patterns and the pace are much more of what I like about VICIOUS RUMORS. The title track is perhaps Geoff´s attempt to create a “Heaven & Hell”. The groovy mid-pace melody hammers in the refrain and with DIO on vocals it would have been a nice attempt. Not that Brian Allen is a poor excuse of a vocalist in any way, I think they have the right man. But we all know about the big black hole that DIO left behind… US power metal bands tend to sound less melodic than their European counterparts, and this lot is no exception. They do have their melodies, except for the weak opener, the way heavier than melodic “Dime Store Prophet” the less inspired “Eternally”. With more songs like the excellent build-up of “Escape (from Hell)”, “Black X List” and the thundering melody of “Thirst for a Kill” they would have been marked higher. Perhaps the imaginative cover choice of KISS “Strange Ways” is a sign that there is still life in them, but at the same time I don´t see the necessity of an established band doing covers. Solid - yes, relying a bit too much on heaviness over melody - yes. I didn´t find a successor to “Don´t Wait for Me” here either.

Track List
I Am the Gun
Black X List
Electric Punishment
D-Block
Escape (from Hell)
Dime Store Prophet
Together We Unite
Eternally
Thirst for a Kill
Strange Ways (KISS Cover)

www.spv.de www.myspace.com/viciousrumors

Writer: Mikael Johansson
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