Mr Big have returned to their roots by enlisting the help of their original producer, Kevin Elson for their ninth album. Recorded in just six days Defying Gravity has all the energy of the early albums and all the synergy of a band who are used to working with each other. Despite the short studio time the album is far from rough around the edges or disjointed, in fact, it's very much the opposite; it's cohesive and shows the band at their best. The band also recorded the album together and this is evident from the sound they produce. They have experimented over the years with different techniques, but going back to basics has certainly served them well. Taking their name from the Free track this album is once again grounded in classic rock but picks up the other influences of the band's history from the 90s pop rock vibes of She's All Coming Back To Me Now to the grittier retro feel of Everybody Needs A little Trouble. It alternates from the blues based, to the mellow and encompasses everything in-between making it an album that doesn't fall into the trap of sounding repetitive or tedious.
Eric Martin's crisp vocals have never sounded better and Paul Gilbert's improvisational based solos are simply incendiary on tracks like Mean To Me and 1992. The band may have the feel of With all the hallmarks of a hard rock supergroup, but their development as a band and as musicians is very telling in the way that they steer clear of too many cliches by using more sophisticated chord structures and timings. Despite the title, the band have produced an album that is definitely on terra firma.
Groupie Rating 4/5