1. Nameless Faceless 2. Enemy 3. Wanderlust 4. All That Remains 5. The Test 6. It's A Lie 7. Daze Of The Week 8. The Way I Am 9. Lazarus 10. Born Of Anger
Just call me a Rich Ward groupie. I'll admit it, go ahead, poke fun all you want. Rich Ward's driving guitar sounds have ruled my playing lists for years. From his jaw dropping escapades with the mighty Stuck Mojo, I do mean MIGHTY by the way, to his antics with Sick Speed and cover band Fozzy. With two years of cover tunes under their wing, Fozzy and Ward return to graceland with their very first all original album. Gone are the wigs, stage names, and silly Spinal Tap back story. Now we get to hear the genuine goods, the real stuff, the talent and craftsmanship that this band really possesses. Move over humor, make way for entertainment.
I've always enjoyed the writing style of Rich Ward. Folks can complain about his hip-hop tendencies or the lack of true metal passion, but Ward is about classic rock and traditional metal, the bands like Boston, Aerosmith, and Bad Company. I think "All That Remains" displays that side of him better than all of his previous work. With this incredible new fixture Fozzy move into their own real world, a reality that focuses on driving songs that display emotion and character, cuts that really sway with mood and attention to detail. This is just a fantastic melodic dose of hard classic rock with a mix of modern overtones to keep it refreshing and new.
With the past two records lead singer and WWE professional wrestler Chris Jericho has struggled somewhat. He has never really proven he has a strong voice. With years of live playing and recording under his belt I think time has really had a positive effect. Jericho really kicks it up a notch, delivering his best work to date and one that will hopefully put him on the metal map and increase his chances of becoming...trendy.
With that being said, let's look at some individual songs starting with my favorite of the group, "Enemy". This track has been chosen as the album's single and it is really a good radio cut. The song is mid-paced with a huge chorus that builds with melody and hooks. The band take advantage of today's modern rock sounds from the likes of Alter Bridge and 3 Doors Down, but the song isn't bogged down with a lack of power. This is a super charged rock frenzy sure to please modern commercial and classic rock fans. The same can be said for "The Way I Am" and "All That Remains" with the latter sounding a bit like Zak/Ozzy glory days. Speaking of Zak Wylde, he stops by for a guest lead on "Wanderlust", a Krokus styled number that really moves and swings with a bit of a blues vibe. Other guests include Marty Friedman (Megadeth), Myles Kennedy (Alter Bridge), Mark Tremont (Alter Bridge), and rapper Bonecrusher. Old fans of Ward will find the Sick Speed classic "The Test" on here, a little reworked to fit Jericho's range. Other choice cuts include the hip-hop signature "It's A Lie" and the aggressive number "Born Of Anger".
About this Writer: Eric Compton // Eric Compton lives in the most haunted city in the world, St. Augustine, Florida with his family and two yorkies. He has served as senior editor for MaximumMetal.com for nearly 10 years and is the author of the heavy metal book series--Denim & Letters. His reviews, interviews and social commentary has been featured on websites like Brave Words, Blabbermouth, Metal Temple, Metal Rules, Ultimate Metal, Metal Maniacs and Wikipedia.
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