STEPHEN PEARCY - Smash

February 4, 2017, 9 months ago

(Frontiers)

Rich Catino

Rating: 8.0

review hard rock stephen pearcy ratt

STEPHEN PEARCY - Smash

Fourth solo album from the Ratt frontman, and no, it does not sound like a Ratt album.  Sure, here and there are moments, it’s unavoidable given the voice and his history. But, the moody modern feel and melody to first track “I Know I’m Crazy” establishes Stephen’s capabilities as a writer who can show variety and not just LA hard rock/metal (I refuse to use the stigma “hair metal”). “Ten Miles Wide” is probably the only track that will remind you of his day job, the chorus and riff though create a different sounding melody.  Still, the solo does have a little of DeMartini’s feel.  A slide guitar Zepplinish groove in “Shut Down Baby”, “mother fucker” is the attitude behind “Dead Roses” edge, and “Lollipop” is pretty poppy rock.

Other sounds of rock Stephen enjoys that influence Smash are a Motley Crueish/“Saints of Los Angeles” “Rain” about his daughter, “Want To Much” has more of that familiar Ratt romp to its mild bouncing rhythm, while “What Do You Think” has a surprising country/southern feel to its whispy swing.  “Jamie” is another to the point up beat rocker with a chugging riff and bass. “Passion Infinity” is one of the more interesting arrangements, taking a twist or two in composition for the verse to chorus which picks up pace and punch. Also, nice phrasing in the guitar solo.  Aside from enjoying the album as a whole listening experience, “Passion Infinity” is probably my favorite track.  “Summer’s End” – a ballad as your closer?, but it works and wraps up Stephen’s music statement.

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