RED REIGN - Red Reign
July 18, 2017, a year ago
Virginia-based quartet, Red Reign, is onto something special with its new self-titled EP. Its five radio-friendly anthems captures the kick ass rock ‘n’ roll spirit of ‘80s hard rock acts such as Van Halen, Dokken, Queensrÿche, Aerosmith and others. Overseen by Grammy-nominated producer, David Ivory (Halestorm, Roots, Silvertide), this 19-minute affair is loaded with killer hooks and catchy melodies. Vocalist/guitarist Carlton “Bubba” McMichael possesses some vibrant lungs in the vein of Don Dokken, Jani Lane and Mike Tramp. He exudes the dynamic ‘80s vocal qualities while bandmates guitarist Stevie Shred, bassist Larry Moore and drummer Sammy Lee lay down some familiar groundwork.
Opener “Not That Way” contains an inviting ‘80s rock feel with a catchy as hell chorus that you’ll be singing for days. It’s a feel-good timeless track that sets a good example of what Red Reign is all about. Follow-up “Toxic” is another ‘80s metal-flavored tune with some heavy-handed riffs, climactic double bass and soaring, Dokken-esque vocal harmonies on the chorus. “Chains” is a chugging, bass-heavy, hard-driving rocker with a thunderous backbeat. The title track hits you like a long lost Tesla song, while closer “What Is Love For” is a melodic and powerful ’80s-flavored ballad that may be varied from the other tracks but completes the track order nicely. Bands such as Red Reign are carrying the torch for melodic hard rock and keeping this genre familiar yet fresh. When your cover art is created by Ioannis, you’re represented by Chipster PR and your album was produced by David Ivory, you’re destined to go places. Keep an eye (and ear) on this band in the future!