tue 18/06/2019

CD: Hollywood Vampires – Rise | reviews, news & interviews

CD: Hollywood Vampires – Rise

CD: Hollywood Vampires – Rise

Fun to the last drop: the supergroup bring some originals to the party

Cooper, Depp and Perry return with some of their own songs

Four years after their debut album, the American supergroup the Hollywood Vampires has reached a new musical level with Rise while maintaining a distinct enthusiasm for playing in a classic rock’n’roll style. The combination of the characters and talents of iconic eccentric Alice Cooper, Hollywood celebrity Johnny Depp and Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry has produced an energetic record, where the fun of making music together is audible and contagious. In contrast to the previous album, which was dedicated to reinventing tracks loved by generations of fans, however, Rise is dominated by original songs.

The opening “I Want My Now” sets the mood – it’s loud, familiar and worthy of some headbanging action. “The Boogieman Surprise” and “Mr. Spider” unsurprisingly nod to the darker corners of rock’n’roll and the gothic imagination of Alice Cooper. It’s not all cartoonish rawk though and “We Gotta Rise” provokes something to consider with its tongue-in-cheek politics, and the philosophical “Congratulations” invites some reflection about an “instant gratification world”. Not content with Hollywood Vampires’ existing celebrity line-up, the album also brings interesting treats from two very special guitar guests, with Jeff Beck and John Waters letting loose on “Welcome to Bushwackers”.

While most of the material is new, Rise also pays tribute to pop and rock royalty with three excellent covers: Perry grabs the reins for Johnny Thunders’ “You Can’t Put Your Arms Around a Memory”, Depp does a brilliant job by taking centre stage on “Heroes”, while the Jim Carroll Band’s “People Who Died” offers a charming contrast between sound and subject matter.

The Hollywood Vampires appear to be still establishing their sound on this new album and seem to be having a lot of fun with it. However, Rise is accessible and positive – a great attempt to appeal to a global rock’n’roll music community.

Rise is accessible and positive – a great attempt to appeal to a global rock’n’roll music community

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4
Average: 4 (1 vote)

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