Gun Barrel – Damage Dancer (Massacre Records)

GunBarrelCoverThe recent Deserted CD release party  reminded me Bonn has a solid Rock foundation that confounds the ‘Keep it Quiet’ brigade and had heads banging and dandruf flying from teenage heads  just as furiously as it ever did in my student days of the 70’s.  Here’s a CD that comes recommended by Patrick Sühl, a voice to be reckoned with from the increasingly heavy sounding Sunny Skies.  Patrick’s voice is also the one on Gunbarrel’s new CD ‘Damage Dancer’ and if the tone of the record is anything but ‘Sunny’ well that’s the nature of the beast called ‘Metal’.

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What little I know of the Band tells me they come from the Cologne area around 1999 and have two founder members still ‘in the saddle’: Rolf Tanzius on guitar and Toni Pinciroli on drums.  The members may be 90’s but the sound is very much 70’s  Hard Rock/Metal.  The band announce themselves online as “Live, loud and eager to Rock” and you certainly can’t fault the enthusiasm on show here.  There’s a rather bombastic entry track That, as guitarist Tomcat Kintgen  points out gives the listener time to “Bring the backrest into an upright position and buckle up!”.  Believe me, you’re in for a turbulent flight and there will be no ‘Unfasten Seatbelts’ signs until the last notes of track 12 ‘Rise up to the Storm’ echo and fade.

It’s an electrifying album of thrashing drums, churning heavy metal chords and death or glory vocals but that’s what it should be.  Did Deep Purple ever claim ‘Speed King’ was about world enlightenment?  There’s certainly a lot of Purple in it’s Ian Gillan phase in this bands music and especially in Patrick’s vocal.  Having seen the original only last year at Kunst!Rasen and compared it mentally to the same Gillan back in the 80’s with his own band I have to say – you want the best vocalist on the planet?  Mr G is still your man.  You want all the fires of hell behind that sound?  Well maybe you should get down to a Gun Barrel show instead.

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‘Vultures are Waiting’ takes us into a world of ‘White witches’ and ‘Mountains’.  We’re obviously in Rainbow territory (and I don’t mean Zippy and Bungo either!)  ‘Passion Rules’ has nods in it’s construction to Guns n Roses and the doomy, gloomy ‘Whiteout’ is out of the Black Sabbath school of Rock for sure.

My favourites are ‘Heading for Disaster’ with excellent vocals by Patrick – maybe spurred on by also being the writer?:.   ‘Rise to the Storm’ which is in the Bryan Adams/Bon Jovii direction and favourite of all ‘Building a Monster’, one man’s way of making himself heard amongst the masses .  Which reminds me that in case anyone wants to argue about my belief that Hard Rock is in safe hands for a while yet – You’ll find me in the cellar – where I’m building something…

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