Michael Monroe ‘Sensory Overdrive’ Apr 4, 2011 11:23:26 GMT -5
Post by on Apr 4, 2011 11:23:26 GMT -5
Michael Monroe ‘Sensory Overdrive’
Label: Spinefarm Records
Review by Bucky
Hanoi Rocks was one of my favorite bands that came out of the 80’s & for me they opened the doors for a more dirty gritty Rock & Roll which appealed to me. After hearing Hanoi Rocks I discovered bands like Guns & Roses, The Dogs D’Amour, London Quireboys, Junkyard, D.A.D., The Sea Hags, The Cherry Bombz, & Shooting Gallery. In 1989 Michael Monroe released a monster of an album titled ‘Not Fakin’ it’ (he released a decent import album titled ‘Nights Are Long’ 2 years earlier). ‘Not Fakin’ it’ is one of those albums where every track is a stand out & it is one of those albums where you’re not going to pick out a few good songs & forget about the rest. You’re going to listen to & enjoy every track on that album.
2011, Michael Monroe has released another one of those albums with ‘Sensory Overdrive’. The album is incredible all the way through & this morning I’m already on my third time listening to it today! The whole album is a blend of stylings of Cheap Trick, The Stooges, the Stones, NY Dolls, Sex Pistols, & of course Michael Monroe. The band is probably Monroe’s tightest lineup since the classic Hanoi Rocks lineup from the mid 80’s. The band features Monroe on vocals, saxophone, & harmonica, drummer Karl Rockfist (toured w/ Danzig), Bassist Sami Yaffa (Hanoi Rocks, Jetboy, Joan Jett, NY Dolls), guitarist Steve Conte (NY Dolls), & guitarist Ginger (The Wildhearts).
The album kicks off with “Trick of the Wrist” & almost immediately you think of the Stooges “Raw Power” which leads Monroe screaming out “I got nasty habits…” revisiting the Stones “Live with Me”. The tune bursts with energy both musically & vocally & before you could take a deep breath “78” starts up which may be the best track on the album. “78” is an anthem rocker with a punk edge filled with riffs & hooks that will have you throwing your fist in the air yelling out “Hey!!”. The song has the feel of Cheap Trick’s “Sick Man of Europe”. There’s even a Bowie reference as Monroe sings “Take out your protein pills & put your helmet on!”. Once again there’s no coming up for air as the beginning punk riff to “Got Blood” rips into the fastest paced tune on the album. “Super Powered Superfly” is an 80’s Cheap Trick style song that is just one of those all around “feel good” songs. “Modern Day Miracle” is another phenomenal song which has a classic metal riff going through it. While it has a metal riff going through it parts of the song has a classic Stones/Aerosmith feel to it but it’s the vocal exchange between the band & Monroe that makes this song a riot. The band keeps singing “Shut Up!” & Monroe yells out “Stop Talking. You’re giving me a Headache!”. The album just keeps rocking out with tunes like “Bombs Away”, “Later Won’t Wait”(another Cheap Trick style rocker), “Debauchery As a Fine Art” (features Lemmy from Motorhead), & “Another Night in the Sun” which has guitar solos that would fit in on a Motorhead tune. There are a couple of pop tunes on the album “All You Need” has an 80’s pop rock feel to it while “Gone Baby Gone” features Lucinda Williams & has a country feel to it more on the lines of the Rolling Stones country side.
Overall I highly recommend this album as this album is what a rock & roll album is all about. The band is amazing & the addition of guitarist Ginger was a great move as he was major force in the songwriting department for this album & his presence is really felt on many of the great riffs on this album. This is Monroe’s greatest release since 1989’s ‘Not Fakin’ it’ & that’s including his 3 reformed Hanoi Rocks albums of the past decade.