PANIC FIRE (Gary Schutt) – Chrysalis (2018)

BLACK ACES - Shot In The Dark [European CD version +3] (2016) full

PANIC FIRE is the next evolution of Gary Schutt’s music. Former Jeff Scott Soto guitarist, Gary has been a solo artist as well for over 20 years. His vast catalog of original music spans from pop to metal to melodic rock. His 12 solo albums have gained critical acclaim from international press and fans. Panic Fire is Gary Schutt’s new band – a power trio – and are releasing their debut album “Chrysalis“.

One day on a long drive home from a gig (August 2017), Gary brainstormed about many things. A rebranding was one of them.
Having already written and recorded most of a new album, he decided to give himself a band name and start from scratch. All of the band names he thought of were cool, but taken in some way. Then he decided to try the way of a song title, like most tribute bands do.

“Panic Fire” was a song from Schutt’s solo album Excruciating Pleasures from 2002. And to make it justice to the newly formed band, they have re-recorded the track here.
Joining Gary on this new musical venture are the experienced Tracy Ferrell on bass and Dan Martin on drums. These guys have been the backbone of all of Gary’s band projects for over five years, including the Diary of an OZZman (Ozzy Osbourne tribute show band).

“Chrysalis”, the band’s second release following the debut ‘Evolve’, contains all new songs, except for the aforementioned re-recording of the track ‘Panic Fire’.
From the start, Schutt and the guys showcase a modern hard rock sound with opener ‘Decompose’. There’s a rumbling bass sound, steady drumming and multi-track guitars, and I hear Gary singing stronger than ever.
‘Call in Dead’ adds sharper guitars, ‘Kiloton Heart’ a groovy melody, while ‘Love of Decay’ some darkness and heaviness. It’s interesting how Schutt has managed to make these tracks sound different, providing variation to the album.

Listening to ‘Throw You in the Volcano’ the band sounds like some Extreme period without the funky factor, then ‘You and Me Against the World’ mix melodic verses and a sonic aura with some 2000’s Danger Danger on it.

PANIC FIRE (Gary Schutt) - Chrysalis (2018) inside

‘Nervous Energy’ is divided into Pt. 1 and Pt. 2, the first with a racing hard rock groove and urgent vocals, the second developing the instrumentation with a busy rhythm section and Schutt flying over the fretboard. The song is really well mixed to separate the trio’s performing skills, and it rocks.
Closer title track ‘Chrysalis’ is one of the catchiest cuts on the album, melodic and with a very good guitar work, both rhythm and soloing.

With his new band Panic Fire Gary Schutt shows he’s not a one trick pony and offers something different from his previous works. The man is a talented songwriter and of course a superb rock guitarist, and here is singing better than never before.
Additionally, not only the material is varied with each song sounding quite unique – but also production is full, for sure Shutt’s better produced record to date.
Highly Recommended

01 – Decompose
02 – Call in Dead
03 – Kiloton Heart
04 – Love of Decay
05 – Throw You in the Volcano
06 – Panic Fire
07 – You and Me Against the World
08 – Magnets
09 – Nervous Energy, Pt. 1
10 – Nervous Energy, Pt. 2
11 – Transformation
12 – Chrysalis

Gary Schutt – vocals, guitars
Tracy Ferrell – bass
Dan Martin – drums


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