WARRANT – Rockaholic (2011)
WARRANT was one of the most popular and successful rock bands to hail out of Hollywood, CA, in the late 80’s and early 90’s, scoring 2 multi-platinum albums, ‘DRFSR’ and “Cherry Pie”.
With the arrival of grunge, Warrant turned to a harder edged sound and released their third album ‘Dog Eat Dog’.
The album also went gold and the band snared a European touring slot playing a number of shows on the “Monsters Of Rock” tour, headlined by Iron Maiden.
Since then, the band has been active, but after the departure of lead vocalist Jani Lane, the group is trying harder to find an adequate replacement.
Last album ‘Born Again’, with ex Black ‘N Blue singer Jamie St. James was a big disappointment to the fans.
In the fall of 2008, Warrant original members, Erik Turner, Jerry Dixon, Joey Allen and Steven Sweet welcomed to the mic long time band friend and fellow touring mate, singer Robert Mason (Lynch Mob, Cry of Love).
The join-in couldn’t worked better.
Their new album “Rockaholic” sounds fresh, energetic. Mason has rejuvenated the band, and his songwriting contribution is clearly evident through the disc.
Right from the start this album is much more ’80s sounding than Born Again.
The lead track, “Sex Ain’t Love” is a good mid paced rocker that the band has been playing live for some time now. It has much more energy than anything off the previous album. Robert sounds great. His voice has hardly changed since his days with Lynch Mob.
The next two tracks, “Innocence Gone” and “Snake” are also really fun rockers. The riffs on this album are some of the most classic 80’s sounding that anyone has put out in the last decade.
The next track, “Dusty’s Revenge” is a cool outlaw type song. The style is more modern, with the guitars tuned down a bit. Interesting variation.
It’s followed by “Home” the first ballad on the album. This what you expect from Warrant, tons of melody and nice vocal harmonies.
“What Love Can Do” is a very good midtempo melodic rocker that sounds pretty ‘european’ to my ears, with some Lynch’s Mob vibe on the pre-chorus. A really cool tune, in an unexpected style from this band.
“Life’s A Song” will be the first single off the album. Very melodic, but with a ‘modern rock’ scent. Obviously the band was looking for a song to enter into the modern radio airplay. Nice.
“Show Must Go On” is a fast paced hard rocker with a live feel. The band sounds awesome on this one. It’s immediately followed by “Cocaine Freight Train”, another fast paced song that just flat out rocks. Both tracks are short, immediate, in-your-face.
“Found Forever” is the second ballad on the album. Starts a little let down, but the chorus is fantastic. Great harmonies and a guitar solo typically Warrant.
“Candy Man” ups the tempo again, here the band sound very nineties.
“Tears In The City” is another ballad. Robert stays in a pretty low range here. It’s a good song that would have fit well on countless albums from the 80’s. Die-hard Warrant will love this one.
The album closes out on a very strong note, as “The Last Straw” is one of the best songs of the CD. Great upbeat tune which again, is just dripping with 80’s vibes.
On “Rockaholic”, the band has captured a perfect mix of the past and present.
Some tracks are typical, classic Warrant, while the ones with a modern approach are convincing for the most part.
They have taken the time to write good songs, with variation, but faithful to the band’s pedigree.
The album sounds huge, thanks to the expertise hands of mega-producer Keith Olsen (Whitesnake, Scorpions, Ozzy Osbourne). This man knows how to cook a rockin’ disc!
01 – Sex Ain’t Love
02 – Innocence Gone
03 – Snake
04 – Dusty’s Revenge
05 – Home
06 – What Love Can Do
07 – Life’s A Song
08 – Show Must Go On
09 – Cocaine Freight Train
10 – Found Forever
11 – Candy Man
12 – Sunshine
13 – Tears In The City
14 – The Last Straw
Robert Mason – Lead Vocals
Jerry Dixon – Bass, Vocals
Erik Turner – Rhythm Guitar, Vocals
Joey Allen – Lead Guitar, Vocals
Steven Sweet – Drums, Vocals
Produced by Keith Olsen
Mixed by Pat Regan
IF YOU LIKE IT, BUY IT!