Rock Company 2018
Thrilling, no-frills heavy metal from Holland hailing fallen heroes and foreseeing darkness ahead.
It takes guts nowadays to not try and reinvent the wheel but to stick to one’s guns without reeking of retro – and that’s what these Netherlanders do. Three years in the making, the band’s debut is a solid display of their ability to deliver missives bemoaning the state of the world in no-nonsense, if somewhat poetic terms.
Whereas “Fall From Grace” finds the “sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll” elusive, the presence of Lemmy in “Out To Lunch” is tangible, and bluesy moves which shape the album’s title track get wonderfully multilayered to create an aural 3D-effect. The ensemble’s mastermind Sander Stappers may let his rumbling bass set the agenda in the introductory salvo “Chasing Deaf” but there’s no progressive intent in riffs’ architecture, so the Roger Dean-styled logo must not mislead the listener.
For the most part it’s as simple as the speedy interplay woven into the reckless instrumental “Pennsylvania” or “Adrenaline Takes Control” – the overt statement of impending danger, ramming the record’s message home – or the unhurried drama offered by “Forwards You Move” whose “make it count” refrain could become the quartet’s motto. So while “My Will Be Done” seems to delve in doom too deep, the piece’s harmony guitars and Francis van der Hoff’s vocals add piquancy to the proceedings, although the album’s best moment is the folk-infused finale “The Subject Of Your Crime” which should point to the less gloomy future for the foursome. Quite a promising start.