What do you get when you put together a guitar God, one of the best modern rock vocalists and a merry band of talented musos? A bloody amazing band and album that's what.
World On Fire is Slash's third solo album but the second collaboration with Myles Kennedy from Alter Bridge, following on from 2012's Apocalyptic Love. The notorious second album is always a tricky one, it's make or break time and the future of the band depends on it. World on Fire sets out SMK&C's motives very clearly in its title and is an incendiary success.
The collectors fan pack boasts 17 tracks and comes with a great magazine from the nice people at Classic Rock full of interviews, great photos, album info a giant poster to add to your wall's hall of fame and trendy pin badge to really show your colours is also included. The album artwork is designed by legendary Ron English, what's not to love about this fan pack?
The titular opening track from the album cranks things up to #11 with a catchy as fuck Slash riff and Brent Fitz's crashing drums and cow bell pulverising anything in its path with a wall of sound. When the vocal kicks in, the song becomes a runaway juggernaut. With such a strong opening it would be reasonable to think that the band have peaked on the first track. For most other artists this would be true, but this is Slash we are talking about here!
Shadow Life continues the energy with a belting chorus and power chords galore. By track 3 and 4,Automatic Overdrive, and Wicked Stone it is highly possible that your stereo will explode with the Maidenesque twin guitars and killer riffs, shreds and key shifts. There is barely time to catch your breath.
If your stereo’s components are still intact by the end of the song then Slash's favourite album track (and mine) will blow you away. 30 Years To Life starts with a nice bit of slide playing and echoes of Paradise City before launching into a modern rock classic and an epic live track for sure.
Things slow down a tad with Bent To Fly and Stone Blind. (Not November Rain slow, more Sweet Child) Too Far Gone is another perfect pounding rock song. Battleground is another track that demonstrates Myles' ability as a lyricist and a vocalist. It's a rock ballad in the best possible sense. Dirty Girl is a sexy, fun powerhouse of a track with a driving thumping guitar riff from Slash. Avalon is inspired by Irish rock and blues music, in particular the late, great, Rory Gallagher, who was a huge influence on The Man In The Hat. The solo is mean and fast, the only thing missing in this track is a ceilidh band!
The Dissident is another epic song with a powerful lyrical message alongside the melodic rock chorus and riffs. The Unholy, is a dark song with an even darker subject matter about Priests abusing children and finally getting their comeuppance. The track is delivered with finesse, an epic production and a guitar solo that sounds like victims crying out for release from their purgatory. Brave and brilliant, which also sums up the album.
Melodic rock has been edging back into the genre with the likes of Royal Blood, Toseland, Alter Bridge and Black Stone Cherry but if you thought rock was dead, think again. SMK&C have risen it again. It's Alive and most certainly kicking!