Def Leppard-Diamond Star Halos   ©2022  Bludgeon Riffola Limited/Mercury Records
​Been a few years since the last Def Leppard album.  This latest album is pretty solid. The album opener 'Take What You Want' starts the album out strong and is one of the band's best rockers not only on this album, but in quite some time. There is quite a bit of variety to be found here as well. The album has Alison Krauss doing guest vocals on a couple of tracks if that is your type of thing. It definitely shows another side to the band. There are also plenty of more mainstream rock tracks and some good melodic stuff as well. Having this album is a great thing as the band go out on tour this Summer adding some of this material to the live show possibly. I have been listening to Def Leppard for a very long time now and it is great to see their creativity is still being utilized in making great sounding rock songs. Been a long time, but definitely worth the wait!
Release Date:  May 27, 2022
Black Eye-Black Eye    ©2022 Frontiers Records 
​While it's been a little bit since we had some Pink Cream 69 music, David Readman has been doing things such as this Frontiers project Black Eye. The band features other great talent including Aldo Lonobile who has been quite active in these projects with Frontiers. Black Eye can be considered melodic metal as it is a bit on the heavier side of the spectrum. Plenty of intensity to be found with this album and Readman really belts his vocals out.  'Space Travel' is one of my favorite tracks. There's plenty of depth here, but also a good pounding low end as well.  Some of the tracks have an even more power metal sound as well.  While there is quite a bit of heavier stuff, the melodic elements never get lost either. There is a fair amount of this which gives the album good balance.  Always fun to see vocalists like Readman in different environments. Good melodic metal!
Release Date: May 6, 2022
Poets Of The Fall-Ghostlight  ©2022 Playground Music
​I had definitely heard this band before, but only in passing. Video games and such. I decided to give this one a spin and was glad I did. This band has many different dimensions to them. I have made my way through a lot of their catalog and each album presents a different personality to the band's sound. Sure there are similarities throughout, but variety through their career has been evident. This latest album feels a bit more rock oriented. There are definitely melodic songs which fans would expect with their history. There is some flashy stuff as well. Check out the guitar solo on 'Revelations' and you'll get my point. Very tight stuff. You'll get some 70's sounding stuff with 'Lust For Life' although a bit more deep in it's body of sound. I thought this more modern rock record offered one hell of a listen. It definitely focused me on this band and their potential!
Release Date:  April 29, 2022
American Jetset-Cats Got Your Tongue   ©2022  Big Curve Music
​Who says American hard rock is dead? American Jetset will change your opinion in a hurry if you believe that. The band go for a heavily influenced by the 80's sound. I was hearing all kinds of cool stuff going on here. Not just reminiscent of bands from the 80's but their sound and tone as well. Where the band differs is the vocals. You may hear stuff that will remind you of Dokken with the song 'Bombs Away' but the vocals sounded more glam to me. It gives the band their own identity as the comparisons will be drawn. The album has eight tracks overall and I felt each tune added to a great overall listen. Fans of 80's rock are going to really dig the familiarity of the sound as mentioned. While some bands write with a heavy influence of 80's hard rock, this band nails it in the sound as well as the songwriting areas. Great melody here as well. Great stuff!
Release Date: May 5, 2022
Zero Hour-Agenda 21   ©2022 Frontiers Records
​Zero Hour has been quiet for quite some time. I don't think I have heard anything since 'The Towers Of Avarice'  back around the turn of the new century although the band released material up to around 2008 or so. I remember digging that album and the technical progressive metal that it offered, so I was definitely curious where things are now. Well, you would think the band never had the hiatus. The album opens up completely firing on all cylinders. The technical progressive is still where they are and the precision is evident. The opening track 'Democide' gets things rolling and is just over 14 minutes in length. Most of the music on the album is well over 5 minutes with half of the albums 6 tracks being around 10 minutes or longer. The music is consistent and will appeal to fans of the genre. Sophisticated, intense, and precise!
Release Date: May 13, 2022