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Appice - Sinister Award winner

by Marcos "Big Daddy" Garcia at 11 November 2017, 8:07 AM

One of the most amazing features in Metal/Rock/Hard Rock is when familiar relationships become a legacy. Imagine that boring and stubborn older brother or sister of yours becoming the one who will guide you to these musical genres, the one who will influence you in the sacred and good Metal/Rock/Hard Rock for your lifetime. It’s not usual (unfortunately) to see brothers in this way, but there are exceptions. The drummer brothers Carmine Appice (the older brother, who played on VANILLA FUDGE, then worked with Rod Stewart, Ozzy Osbourne and others, and had his own band, called KING KOBRA, in the 80s) and Vinny Appice (known for his drumming on BLACK SABBATH, DIO, HEAVEN AND HELL and others) never made a collaborative work before, but APPICE’s album “Sinister” came to change this fact.

What you will find on “Sinister” is not unexpected: it’s a Heavy Metal/Hard Rock album in a way that isn’t new at all, created with fine and charming melodies, very good keyboards parts, that essential dose of aggressiveness and musical weight, and all the songs pulses with energy and personality. That’s what matters, isn’t it?

I believe so, as many do the same.

Obviously, Vinny and Carmine produced the album, and it was recorded in different locations. But the work of Steve DeAcutis on the mix and mastering of the songs paved all the differences, creating a sonority that is heard as a unity. It’s clear and with all the arrangements clear, but with a heavy weight that can surprise many listeners.

As guests on the album’s songs, we have the singers Jim Crean, Paul Shortino (ROUGH CUTT, ex-QUIET RIOT), Robin McAuley (MSG), Chas West (Ex-LYNCH MOB), and Scotty Bruce; on the guitars, Craig Goldy (ex-DIO, ex-GIUFFRIA), Bumblefoot (ex-GUNS N’ ROSES), Joel Hoekstra (WHITESNAKE), Mike Sweda (BULLETBOYS), Erik Turner (WARRANT), David Michael Phillips (KING KOBRA); on bass guitar, Tony Franklin (ex-BLUE MURDER, ex-THE FIRM), Phil Soussan (ex-OZZY OSBOURNE), Johnny Rod (KING KOBRA, Ex-WASP), and Jorgen Carlson (GOV'T MULE), and Erik Norlander (LANA LANE) on keyboards. A very good team to record an album, don’t you agree?

The album’s main idea was not to be a cornerstone on Metal, nor even being one of the top10 lists of 2017. But free and uncompromised as it is, “Sinister” is great, amazing and really charming. And as it finest moments, we can say that the drummer brothers show great creativity on the heavy and catchy “Sinister”, the heavy rock accessibility of “Monsters and Heroes”, the complexity shown on the very good “Killing Floor” and on “Danger”, the Hard Rock nasty and charming energy of “Drum Wars” (with very good drums solos), the tender atmosphere shown on “In the Night”, the emotive parts of the heavy song called “Future Past”, the rhythmic technique shown on “Bros in Drums”, and the excellent “War Cry”. But a great surprise is to hear “Sabbath Mash”, a medley of old BLACK SABBATH songs, but without any song from the times Vinny played on the band (you’ll hear parts of “Iron Man”, “War Pigs”, “Paranoid”, and with the brothers destroying their drums, but with some different contributions of the other musicians), maybe a tribute to Bill Ward’s influence.

The Appice brothers did a fine work on “Sinister”, and I hope that APPICE will release other albums in the future.

Originality: 8
Songwriting: 10
Memorability: 9
Production: 10

4 Star Rating

1. Sinister
2. Monsters and Heroes
3. Killing Floor
4. Danger
5. Drum Wars
6. Riot
7. Suddenly
8. In the Night
9. Future Past
10. You Got Me Running
11. Bros in Drums
12. War Cry
13. Sabbath Mash
Carmine Appice - Drums, Vocals
Vinny Appice - Drums
Record Label: SPV/Steamhammer Records


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Edited 11 June 2023

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