THE DEFIANTS - The Defiants (Review)

information persons: 
content: 
98%

 

Produced By: 
Bruno Ravel & The Defiants
Running Time: 
58
Release Date: 
2016
Released: 
Worldwide
Musical Style: 
Melodic Hard Rock
Score: 
98
Label: 
Frontiers
Artist: 
 
 
Put Paul Laine, Bruno Ravel and Rob Marcello together and you just know something special will evolve. The Danger Danger alumni join forces for the first time together as a trio, even if it’s a virtual trio, with the 3 members all recording in their own individual studios.
Laine is still revered for his work with Bruno Ravel over 4 studio albums with Danger Danger (alongside Andy Timmons and Steve West) and of course Rob Marcello has been touring with the guys for years and most recently delivered an outstanding performance on the band’s Revolve album (with Ted Poley). If that confuses you, then you haven’t been paying attention to some of the best music of the last two decades!
 
The Defiants was born out of a desire for a new rock vehicle for Paul Laine (alongside his country Dark Horse project) and a project for Rob and Bruno in lieu of any new D2 material.
 
Despite individually recording, the album has a very cohesive feel. Tying it all together is a brilliant mix from Bruno and some bright, dynamic performances from all, a real achievement when considering the circumstances.
 
The result is almost exactly as expected. There’s a huge chunk of Four The Hard Way and Gildersleeves (Paul’s vocals and Bruno’s production) and some Revolve as well (thanks to Rob’s guitar style); but The Defiants also has its own feel.
Most noticeable for me was some of the choruses – they are super slick and more 80s sounding than the darker edge of the Laine fronted D2 albums.
 
Track for track, there’s just one great song after another. With perhaps one exception that will be down to personal taste.
Love & Bullets and When The Lights Go Down are both high energy melodic rockers with so much to love about them. Waiting On A Heartbreak is an even more melodic anthem with some brilliant vocals and a ton of shred and Runaway sees the introduction of some piano on a neat little feel good song with a monster commercial chorus. You just can’t help but sing along here.
Perfection all the way thus far.
 
Then a small bump in the road. I’m not digging Lil' Miss Rock'n'roll. It’s one of those swaggering bluesy rockers that mentions a bunch of classic song titles and is just a tad lyrically cheesy for my tastes. It’s out of character with the rest of the album though, so it’s instantly back into the brilliance with Last Kiss – a track which is exactly what I love about these guys - intense, darker, gritty and a kick ass anthemic chorus that rolls along at pace.
Save Me Tonight is a slow 6 minute moody, brooding ballad/rocker that slows the album for the first time. Huge vocal here from Paul and a wonderfully constructed slower track.
 
Take Me Back is pure Danger Danger – up tempo, fun, retro and delivers another set of great hooks.
We All Fall Down is another highlight for me – it again has that grittier edge of Laine fronted D2. Attitude laced vocals and a choppy riff, a melodic bridge and a big chorus hook….love it.
That’s When I’ll Stop Loving You is the second rock ballad of the album. At nearly 7 minutes the song does feel longer than others, but it’s still over in a flash. Emotive vocals, moody guitars and an expanded Def Leppard style musical base.
 
Closing out the album is one of the best tracks onboard – the fast paced anthemic rocker Underneath The Stars which is just pure brilliance. Perfect Paul Laine, Danger Danger and melodic rock all round. Big riffs, big chorus, big smiles.

So The Defiants is essentially a modern day Paul Laine meets Danger Danger 4 The Hard Way and Return Of The Great Gildersleeves, but with a stronger 80s feel; all mixed with latter day D2 in Revolve plus a touch of its own uniqueness.
Basically the perfect album for fans of Danger Danger/Paul Laine and all fans of brilliant, super catchy, hard edged melodic rock.
The production style had a sound a little left of what I expected, but the songs deliver everything I wanted. Huge!
 
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