I have been a bit late to the party with this album, released back in May it has somehow taken three months for me to get my hands on a copy but as is often the case with these things, good things come to those who wait.
I think it is fair to say that all of the members of Guns N’ Roses have flourished since escaping the somewhat bizarre Axl Rose; they have been quietly going about their business, getting clean and producing some damn fine rock albums. Slash in particular has enjoyed considerable success and Apocalyptic Love is his second solo release, following up on the strong performance of his 2010 eponymously titled album.
Whilst the first album featured a dazzling array of guest vocalists that ranged from Black Eyed Pea Fergie to the one and only Lemmy this time Slash has opted for a dedicated singer in the form of Alter Bridge vocalist Myles Kennedy. So impressed was the top hatted one with Myles’ contribution to his first release and the subsequent tour that he considered him the obvious and only choice for Apocalyptic Love.
Having a dedicated singer gives the album a more coherent feel than the first release, it flows better and it feels more like a proper album than a compilation as tends to be the case when vocal duties are shared.
Myles is the perfect man for the job as well, his 4 octave vocal range means he can turn his hand to pretty much anything, equally at home dealing with the restrained and edgy opening phases of ‘Standing In The Sun’ to the soaring notes of ‘Halo’, he continually shows he is the consummate rock singer.
The songs themselves are what you would expect from Slash, powerful bluesy rock riffs that encompass that element so hard to capture and all too often absent in modern rock…. groove. Slash really does have a wonderful knack of penning a tune that sticks in your head and gets you moving. The songs were recorded in analogue, onto tape and with the band playing as a unit rather than a series of overdubs. This approach gives the whole thing a warmth and energy that is sometimes lacking in this digital age.
The lyrical content is what you would expect from a good ol’ fashioned rock n roll album, avoiding tackling any major socio-political issues or going off into some prog-like concept. The lyrics deal with the kind of issues that we all face in our day-to-day and that is just another reason the album grows on you, and grow on you it will.
This album is one of those slow burners, the first listen doesn’t blow you away but by the 4th or 5th play you find yourself becoming familiar with the tracks and the realisation that you have a new favourite amongst your collection.
If I had to give a stand out track, one to listen to for a good overall feel of the album as a whole then have a listen to ‘Standing In The Sun’ – I dare you not to nod your head!
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