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Bite the Bullet - Rocky Road

Bite the Bullet
Rocky Road
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 25 May 2023, 3:51 AM

Today, people in the Rock scene are witnessing the rebirth of AOR, a musical genre that was a massive commercial success during the late years 0f the 70s and entire 80s, what inspired a lot of Glam Metal band to absorb elements of the genre to try to reach a good level of commercial success. But as things that are good don’t die, the genre is back, with many new bands breathing a new life into the genre, and some veterans still showing some cards hidden in their sleeves. One of them is the English quintet BITE THE BULLET, and there here again with their new album, “Rocky Road”. The quintet follows the same musical model used by acts as TOTO, FOREIGNER, ASIA and others that took the more accessible road on the genre, the one that brings a lot of influences of Pop Rock into their music, but some British Rock touches can be heard (especially on the guitars).

Obviously this is an album that even the readers’ grandmother can hear and like due its accessible and silk appeal, with charming melodies and choruses easy to sing along. But it doesn’t mean that their music isn’t full of an elegant outfit (check their approach on “Call of the Wild” to have the clear idea of what these words mean), and it’s really charming for the senses. So, what are you expecting? “Rocky Road” was produced by Mick Benton (the band’s vocalist), and the care of making things clean and defined in an AOR sense is sensible in every moment, but with a modern outfit. But of course, there’s that essential touch of distortion that a Rock ‘n’ Roll album must bear, so things work on an almost perfect way.

“Rocky Road” is a very good album, with 11 excellent songs for fans of AOR (and even for those who have an open mind to deal with something that isn’t usual for their personal musical tastes), with highlights on “Dead Man Walking” (very good and tender melodies with charming keyboards arrangements and vocals feeling the spaces), “Not Today” (that is really near the accessible Pop Rock acts of the 80’s, but with some Hard Rock touches, and what very good work on the arrangements of bass guitar and drums), “Call of the Wild” (a charming and introspective ballad filled with excellent arrangements on clean guitars), “My Frankenstein” (here the band’s music shows some aggressiveness, and what excellent arrangements on bass guitar), “Atlantic Highway” (almost a Pop song, and it’s not an offense), “Sleeping Dogs” (the Country Rock scent is clear, and what great guitars), and “Rock Road”. For a first time on the album, these will do the presentations, but on the second, you’ll be hooked for sure.

To listen to “Rocky Road” is really a very good experience, so praise BITE THE BULLET, and enjoy!

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. Dead Man Walking
2. Not Today
3. Digging That Hole
4. Call of the Wild
5. My Frankenstein
6. Atlantic Highway
7. Dancing Eyes
8. Waiting for You
9. Sleeping Dogs
10. Rock Road
11. Ironstone
Mick Benton - Vocals, Guitars, Bass, Keyboards
Malcolm Jones - Guitars
Steve Hill - Keyboards, Backing Vocals
Ant King - Bass, Backing Vocals
Graham Cowling - Drums
Record Label: Escape Music


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