March 19, 2018 BulletBoys – From Out Of The Skies (Album Review)
A band out of the 1980s Glam Metal era, BulletBoys are proud to announce the follow-up to 2015’s Elefante, and their ninth overall studio album, From Out Of The Skies, set to drop on March 23, 2018, thanks to Frontiers Music S.R.L.
Out of Los Angeles, California, BulletBoys – Marq Torien (vocals), Mick Sweda (guitar), Lonnie Vincent (bass), and Jimmy D’Anda (drums) – burst out of the Sunset Strip scene and immediately gave Glam Metal fans their biggest hit single, “Smooth Up in Ya,” catapulting the band’s debut album, 1988’s BulletBoys, to a platinum-selling sensation. Needless to say, BulletBoys arrived as an immediate smash-hit and, not to be forgotten, garnered deserving recognition as a band of considerable talent. Torien’s mighty vocal range and impassioned stage presence drew the frontman comparisons to icons like David Lee Roth. As a whole, musically, the BulletBoys were momentous, playing a strong combination of Bluesy Hard Rock/Glam Metal much different than some of their peers like Poison or Ratt.
The band’s second album, 1991’s Freakshow, achieved moderate success, as did 1993’s ZA-ZA, but after three albums and dwindling sales, BulletBoys were released from their contract with Warner Bros. Records and broke up by sometime in 1995. Then, in 1998, Torien reformed the BulletBoys and, ever since, the band continues to consistently create new music and tour amongst a multitude of line-up changes.
Today, the BulletBoys lineup consists of Nick Rozz (guitar), Chad MacDonald (bass), and Anthony “Tiny” Biuso (drums), with Torien as the lone original member, a rewarding experience. Perhaps one of the most interesting details about From Out Of The Skies, the new album was recorded at the Foo Fighters’ own studio, Studio 606. Even better, to bring some extra magic to From Out Of The Skies, the BulletBoys were granted the opportunity to use some of the Foo Fighters’ acoustic guitars and a drum set thanks to Taylor Hawkins and Dave Grohl.
Ten brand new cuts with a big sound, From Out Of The Skies continues the BulletBoys’ exodus from the Glam Metal sound to a vibe more straight-up Rock than anything else. Kicking off with “Apocalypto,” From Out Of The Skies starts off in dynamic form before “D-Evil,” the album’s first single and music video steps in with special guest vocals by Jesse Hughes from the Eagles of Death Metal. Next, the title track “From Out of the Skies” continues the loud drive of the record before the ballad, “Hi-Fi Drive By,” comes along as more of a head scratcher with hard to understand lyrics (“I am just a lonely car crash”).
A tender number, “Losing End Again” does a decent job relating to listeners who feel as if they can never get what they want. Opening with a massive wall of drums and crash cymbals, “What Cha Don’t” won’t hurt you before getting to the groovy, almost Funk and Rap inspired “P.R.A.B.,” which strangely stands for “Punk Rock Ass Bootie.”
The first of three straight ballads, “Sucker Punch” is uptempo and written for a girl, before the well-written and tender acoustic ballad “Switchblade Butterfly.” Lastly, the best and most emotionally-resonating song on From Out Of The Skies, “Once Upon a Time” sees Torien deliver candid and emotional lyrics about feeling alive, maybe for the first time.
All this said about the BulletBoys’ new release, with the exception of three very good aforementioned tracks – “Sucker Punch,” “Switchblade Butterfly,” and “Once Upon a Time” – the majority of From Out Of The Skies may be a bit disappointing to some fans. The album mostly consists of loud and rambunctious songs some listeners may seek. Listening to some of these tracks, it is difficult to figure out the meaning or purpose to much of the lyrical content and the music itself. This is unfortunate, because if you listen closely, the album does showcase the BulletBoys to be a group of strong musicians and, even after 30 years behind the microphone, Torien’s vocal chops are stunning. For these reasons, CrypticRock gives From Out Of The Skies 3 out of 5 stars.
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