VOLBEAT-Rewind, Replay, Rebound
I always find the covers of a Volbeat album quite fascinating. On their 2016 album ‘Seal The Deal And Let’s Boogie’ you saw a drawing of an old fashioned style fist fighter on the cover and on their 7th CD the Danish outfit comes up with a design that could have ‘borrowed’ from the ‘Peaky Blinders’ TV-series. Volbeat has become the most important export product of Denmark when you are talking about music. Singer/guitarist Michael Poulsen and his band have really come up from the ranks and worked themselves up to be a major act these days. They have created a certain recognisable factor in their sound consisting of the charismatic voice of Poulsen but also a certain ‘beat’ in their music that makes them stand out. It has taken the band some years to develop that signature sound and on ‘Rewind, Replay, Rebound’ they are trying to take things a notch further with producer Jacob Hansen. Volbeat has always had these weird influences from the psychobilly and rockabilly movement in them combined with their chugging melodic metal. There is more of that on this record that contains fourteen compositions, but unfortunately from those fourteen tracks a few of them are fillers and in some cases Volbeat really goes overboard. I mean the B’52’s guitar sound in ,,Sorry Sack Of Bones’’ is misplaced, this song sounds sometimes more like a tune in the Batman TV-series. Also the inclusion of the ultra-short tune ,,Parasite’’ makes no sense while ,,Pelvis On Fire’’ would make The King turn in his grave. Am I too harsh now? Judge that for yourself. Of course there are plenty of tracks that do appeal like opener ,,Last Day Under The Sun’’ where Volbeat almost sounds like a real Arena rock band. It is a track with a very easy chorus to sing along with. Nothing wrong with being catchy but it just indicates for me that Volbeat knows in which position they are now and they are trying to ‘cash’ in on that by trying to reach a larger audience. But on the other hand, there are several songs there that remind us of their signature rocking sound like ,,Cheapside Sloggers’’, ,,The Awakening Of Bonnie Parker’’, the riff-dominated ,,The Everlasting’’ (hello Metallica?) and ,,Rewind The Exit’’. There are some guests present on the record as well like Clutch vocalist Neil Fallon helping vocally out on the fast ,,Die To Live’’ (a song with sax and piano and again a bit weird) while guitarist Gary Holt (Exodus/Slayer) guest stars on ,,Cheapside Sloggers’’. Closer ,,7.24’’ is a reasonably quite song written by Poulsen for his daughter, lyric wise a bit on the soppy side perhaps. So there we have it, a record with a few songs too many as far as I am concerned. If they would have been really critical several songs could have been cut as now this is a record with some uninteresting moments. By the way, the Deluxe 2-CD edition features another nine tracks of which two are not on the regular album while the other seven are on the CD but are featured as demo versions on the second CD.