Bad Bones keep classic rock and roll alive and kicking with this latest album High Rollers. Bursting through with high octane power chords and impressively fast-paced drum work, American Days introduces the project in a bold way. The band’s leading vocalist offers the perfect tone and strength to give the sound a nostalgic Guns N’ Roses-style quality. In addition, the writing offers plenty in the way of togetherness and now – nostalgic and contemporary vibes fuse well and fill the project with fresh energy.
In terms of the mood and emotion presented on the album, there’s plenty in the way of depth and consideration. Lost Again is an early example, showcasing from the start that there is far more to the band than this raw rock and roll vibrancy. The song is fascinating, feeling heavy metal inspired in more ways than one. The melody develops brilliantly from the verse to the hook – letting conceptual optimism rise higher in the process.
Wild Rose kicks off with one of the most enjoyable and easily memorable riffs, followed by a rightfully bright and uplifting song. Midnight Rider afterwards toys with creativity a little, the musicality is impressive, decidedly original and infectious in pace. Powerful vocals emerge. A great track to get you up and moving around. Solitary Fields follows and brings a sense of reflective weight and poetic scene setting. This album quickly becomes an eclectic and easy to escape within playlist.
In terms of the recording style, the collection has been flawlessly captured. You can feel the live energy and trust in the band to impress if you were to grab tickets to a show, but this is not in the place of a quality master that lets each layer stand tall whilst letting the entire soundscape work beautifully at volume; just as rock and roll was intended to be experienced.
Now or Never is a personal highlight for its contrasting delicacy – there’s an indie-rock softness and space to the verses and to the guitar sound; even the vocals have a near-whispered quality on occasion. The lyrics seem set to inspire and motivate in a mighty way. Blood Trails cranks the energy back up and sees immense riffs cascade and captivate. The quick vocal delivery feels reminiscent again of classic bands from the dawn of the genre. There’s character and a slightly theatrical feel to much of this song. A really well-crafted track that stands out for its creative set-up and changing emotions.
Towards the end of the album, Wolf Town offers a shared moment of escapism as the singer declares honest feelings and a perspective that many will likely be able to relate to. The way the band fuse openness and poetry is compelling – a trait that undoubtedly raises them up a little higher than the majority of indie rock and roll bands of late.
Story Of A Broken Bone brings the penultimate moment about with distorted, softly chaotic riffs, and a calming melody-line that again sets the scene beautifully with detailed, thoughtful lyrics. There’s a strange warmth to this track and a sense of overcoming – it leaves you feeling fairly empowered and capable of anything. Another personal favourite.
The album comes to a close with Rock’n Me, a superb song and an absolute highlight. The classic rock and roll aura burns brightly, stunning guitar solos cascade at the end of vocal moments, the lyrics story-tell in the best possible way. The leading voice even seems to offer the perfect level of rasp among an otherwise smooth melodic delivery, and the structure sees the whole thing keep changing and simultaneously satisfying as it evolves. The verse melody is long-form and incredibly effective in drawing you in. An awesome way to end the album and a welcomed reminder to head back and re-experience the entire project. Bad Bones are undoubtedly a band worth seeking out for a live show.