Gundriver Records, 2013
There’s something re-assuring about this release. It sounds like it could’ve been released in 1974, 1988 or last week. There’s something refreshingly timeless and enduring about this sort of hard rock. Using AC/DC and Deep Purple as templates, Gundriver delivers a solid album of chest thumping, headbanging, strip club ready, rock songs made for long evenings of bad behavior and calls to bail bondsmen.
“Against the Darkness” is a slower grind of a song. Taking it’s time so it feels like it was written in an a L.A. traffic jam. Scott Siegel’s voice is a distinct and pleasant growl somewhere in between Brian Johnson and Ian Gillian’s Lower register.
“Nothing to Lose” is a stellar track that’s thick with swamp muck and reeks of diesel and cheap whiskey. A heavy blues-rock number with a southern feel, in a lot of ways this song sounds as old as the hills. Instantly likable and an immediate classic, If it was released now by a has been act it would be hailed as a comeback number. As it is Gundriver could be playing Sturgis and bike weeks near and far forever with great songs like this.
The guitar riff on “Warrior” is reminiscent of some of the best moments from the late 70′s movement, the New Wave of British Heavy Metal. The movement which blessed the world with Iron Maiden, Saxon, and ultimately most of the less well known bands which helped inspire and shape Metallica. That said “Warrior” is a bear of a song. Light on it’s feet, and the fastest song in this collection, the guitar harmonies are a delight to hear, as they tear into the riff and allow the song to build a head of steam.
Gundriver has good song writing, and the band more than capable chops. This is a solid debut, with memorable songs. My money says this is a band to watch develop.