TRIXTER – New Audio Machine (2012)
After 20 years since their last proper, full length studio release, TRIXTER has awakened with a new release entitled “New Audio Machine” and with all four original the members in the line-up.
Trixter caught their big break in 1990 after getting signed to a major label and immediately exploded into the spotlight with their commercial hair metal. Their second album ‘Hear’ was a much and rockier yet retaining a radio friendly sound.
With “New Audio Machine” the biggest difference between ‘then’ and ‘now’ is that now, Trixter has released a hard hittin’ American Hard Rock record which certainly gonna make a lot of heads spin.
Just listening to the opening verse of “Drag Me Down” is enough for most people to say ‘Huh? This is Trixter?’. Co-penned with former Styx guitar-slinger Glen Burtnik (who adds his own musical touches playing guitars as well), the song starts off with an almost southern-rock groove to it (ala Tesla) but when kicks in, it smacks you in the face like an anvil with a fierce guitar riff and an incredibly thick, rich arrangement. Great tune which is anything but your typical Trixter.
“Get On It” is similar in that heavier, more aggressive style featuring a sing-along chorus. On this track, I fully realize that Trixter has tapped into their gold selling past and made certain to make a song that resonates both relevancy and old school Hard Rockin’ glory.
With “Dirty Love” arrives, yes, your prototypical Trixter track. The guitar licks and rhythm are unmistakably Steve Brown just as the backing vocals in the chorus have that distinct flavor.
“Machine,” on the other hand, while still maintaining just a touch of the band’s nineties flair, is an aggressive, artery-bursting track which will surely get your blood pumping. There’s a thundering bass rhythm layered over Scott’s heavy percussion hits as the song begins right before Steve’s guitar comes screaming in and Loran’s vocals take over. Killer track, easily one of the best on the CD.
The semi-ballad “Live For The Day” packs a very positive and uplifting message and allows Pete’s amazing vocals to really take center stage for the first time. Beautifully done and the ever so subtle keyboards By Eric Ragno perfectly compliment the electric-acoustic driven melody giving the chorus that full, fat sound.
“Ride” finds the band once again returning to their roots as far as the overall hooks and grooves to the song but still it has a sharper, edgier side that true fans are gonna love.
“Physical Attraction,” is another up-tempo Trixter trademark rocker which will be sure to please all those die-hard fans.
“Tattoos & Misery” is the first single and video for the release and is easily the most commercially appealing with its potent, melodic chorus.
Now arrives my favorite piece of the album, the superb ballad “The Coolest Thing”. And it’s more than ‘cool’. The arrangement, the lyrics, the feel, the sound, everything about this song is sheer power ballad perfection right down to the final note. Pete Loran gives the vocal performance of a lifetime so much that you can actually feel the emotion flow through you as the rest of the musicians on this track.
The album winds-up again with another audacious, uptempo number called “Save Your Soul”. The heavy guitar riff gives way to a nicely executed and almost anthem-like chorus on this one.
Then finally rounding off the release is “Walk With A Stranger” which was written way back in the late ’80s by SKID ROW’s Snake Sabo and Rachel Bolan. While is does have the slight Skid Row vibe, Trixter has made it genuinely their own.
If you are one of the few who doesn’t like Trixter’s nineties commercial albums and don’t want more, you will be terribly wrong letting pass “New Audio Machine”.
This new recording includes the best melodies of the past, yes, but also energetic and kickin’ American Hard Rock songs. A really well-rounded release which is a prime example of what you can accomplish by effectively blending musicianship and style with a mature approach to the music.
Production is good, just a bit uni-dimensional, but I think if you focus on the songs themselves you’ll have a more than a nice time listening to this new album while driving or partying out.
“New Audio Machine” will bury any misconceptions anyone has ever had about these guys once and for all. This is what American styled Hard Rock is all about.
It’s been 20 years but Trixter finally got it right, and for any hard rock, melodic rock, rockin’ AOR fan, “New Audio Machine” has more than its share of tasty tidbits and memorable moments.
01 – Drag Me Down
02 – Get On It
03 – Dirty Love
04 – Machine
05 – Live For The Day
06 – Ride
07 – Physical Attraction
08 – Tattoos & Misery
09 – The Coolest Thing
10 – Save Your Soul
11 – Walk With A Stranger
12 – Find A Memory (European bonus track)
Peter Loran – lead vocals, rhythm guitar
Steve Brown – lead guitar, harmonica, backing vocals
P. J. Farley – bass guitar, backing vocals
Mark “Gus” Scott – drums, percussion, backing vocal
Glen Burtnik – Additional Guitars, Bass, Vocals & Percussion (Track 1)
Eric Ragno – Keyboards (Tracks 1, 5 & 9)
Mark Sly – Backing Vocals (Track 9)
Pete Evick – Additional Guitars, Percussion (Track 9)
Bobby August – Backing Vocals (Track 9)
Angela Marien – Backing Vocals (Track 10)
John “J3” Allen – Backing Vocals (Track 11)
BUY IT !