CRAZY LIXX – Riot Avenue (2012)
Swedes’ CRAZY LIXX’s second studio album New Religion was a success both for critics and for the MHR fans. After almost two years the anxious for a new recording is over as Crazy Lixx has just released third studio album titled “Riot Avenue”.
Topping their previous efforts is no small task, nor is living up to my expectations, but let me be the first to say that Crazy Lixx have nailed it — and finally delivered the album I have been waiting all this time for.
Why is Riot Avenue the shining star of Crazy Lixx’s discography? That’s simple — because the band have finally added some ‘kick’ to their music that was only hinted at back in their formative years.
The huge ’80s influenced arena sound is still here, but this time around there is an element of toughness to the band that was getting washed away with slick sounds and production — in other words, the band has added more ‘rock’ to their ‘roll’.
So what we get from Riot Avenue is the best Crazy Lixx has to offer, the sound we always knew they were capable of, and a disc that raises the stakes yet again in the crowded Swedish rock scene.
One change you’ll instantly notice is how the guitars have taken over the Crazy Lixx sound, as Andy Dawson feeds off new member Edd Liam for a furious twin attack — listening to “Riot Avenue” makes you wonder why the band didn’t add a second shredder years ago.
The duo flails away from beginning to end, adding more meat to the bones of the signature Crazy Lixx sound. And that sound is still over-the-top ’80s rock, only now with a heavier and more captivating direction.
There are still elements of Def Leppard here, but throughout several songs you can picture Paul Stanley of Kiss licking his finger in ecstasy. Probably the hardest thing for the band regarding this album was choosing the first single, as several are worthy of that distinction, but they went with the safe “In The Night” — a choice as good as any.
“Whiskey Tango Foxtrot”, a hard-hitting opener that takes you back to the ‘Heroes Are Forever’ days, starts us off while “Young Blood” continues the trend of offering scorching hard rock with massive melodies.
But even better yet is the title track “Riot Avenue” — the type of song that Gene Simmons would sell his children for.
I’m not a religious man by any means, however listening to “Church Of Rock” had me looking for the collection plate, “Heatseeker” in turn counters it perfectly with a darker bottom end and “Sweet, Bad & Beautiful” has hit single written all over it thanks to its sing-a-long chorus.
The band wraps the album with a great slow tune, not exactily a ballad, soft but powerful at the same time.
For Crazy Lixx, going back to their roots and adding a second guitarist were strokes of genius — “Riot Avenue” is the album they needed to release now.
What fans look for in a great Hard Rock albums are dominating melodies, kick ass guitar riffs, a riveting chorus line which Crazy Lixx usually packs on the heavy duty side in each song, and you combine that on top of the typical nuances that you find from Melodic Hard Rock bands, you have a winner.
In a year that is already overflowing with excellent new Melodic Hard Rock music, Riot Avenue has quickly floated to the top of the heap.
If “Riot Avenue” isn’t album of the year it only means that 2012 is going to be one hell of a year for killer music.
01 – Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
02 – Young Blood
03 – Riot Avenue
04 – Fire It Up
05 – Downtown
06 – In The Night
07 – Church Of Rock
08 – Heatseeker
09 – Sweet, Bad & Beautiful
10 – Be Gone
11 – Only The Dead Know
Danny Rexon – Vocals
Luke Rivano – Bass, Backing Vocals
Edd Liam – Guitars, Backing Vocals
Andy Dawson – Guitar
Joey Cirera – Drums
BUY IT !