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Crosson - Invincible

Crosson
Invincible
by Emmalyn Campbell at 24 May 2018, 11:06 PM

CROSSON is a band representing Sydney, Australia. They are described as Theatrical Glam Melodic Rock, meant to take over after the golden age of Glam and Shock Rockers, both in the music they produce and in their style and stage presence. Their sophomore album “Invincible” is a follow-up to 2016’s “Spreading The Rock ‘N’ Roll Disease.”

It took me a few listens to come around to opening track “Rock Warriors,” particularly because I wasn’t immediately sold by the chorus, but there are so many gems in this song that I can hardly be mad at it. The keyboards are really present, and that’s always a good sign when a band is paying homage to Glam, and the lyrics are riddled with references to some of the greatest names in the history of Hard Rock and Heavy Metal, JUDAS PRIEST, IRON MAIDEN, SKID ROW, and KISS to name just a few. If you mean to honor bands like these, who have near godlike statuses, you better make sure someone in the group can play that guitar, and leading man Joel McDonald withstands the test with a commanding solo.

Never Give Up” follows. Lyrically, it’s not unlike WHITE LION’S “Don’t Give Up,” but the track is much weaker than the opener. Unfortunately, the chorus can’t be saved, even by the song’s more redeemable qualities, pleasing vocal harmonies and some really nice guitar work towards the end. However, “Success Needs No Apologies” gets the album back on track with its drums, a sturdy backbone, and screeching and powerful guitars throughout. “Hero” is softer and more upbeat and is probably the most classic-sounding of the first bunch of tracks, specifically because you could stick it in a block of music videos with “Summertime Girls” and “Turn Up the Radio,” and it wouldn’t feel out of place. “Unconditional Love” features guest vocals by Jessica Wolff, and she creates great harmonies with Jason Crosson. It’s obviously meant as a ballad, and while that might seem obligatory for the genre, it doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing. If it’s not broken, don’t fix it, right?

From the initial repetition of the song’s title, “Broken” seems to be the more theatrical side of the group. This is also evident in the bridge before another impressive guitar solo. Aside from the solo, this is a track that needs some stronger hooks, the chorus lacking in particular. Title track “Invincible” is a call-to-arms, and it seems that I can’t stop raving about the group’s talented guitarist, and the vocal harmonies are what you’d want from a 1980s tune.

Rebel Train” is a simple but satisfying. The twin guitars are MAIDEN-esque, and the high-pitched keyboards in the background pair well with the song’s comparatively darker tone. The final two tracks, “Livin’ The Life” and “Back To Hell,” are again not the album’s strongest, which is always a shame if they are the finale of the listening experience. They don’t make my ears bleed or anything, but the riffs are simple, the choruses are boring, and they seem to lack some of the earlier passion displayed in other songs. Even the vocal harmonies, which are fantastic in other areas, just seem a little tired.

Overall, I have conflicting final thoughts. There are some great songs with serious replay value here, but there were also quite a few that disappointed me. However, I will salute CROSSON for completely embracing this genre. It doesn’t feel like a cheap imitation but a group that really honors its influences.

Songwriting: 7
Originality: 7
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Rock Warriors
2. Never Give Up
3. Success Needs No Apologies
4. Hero
5. Unconditional Love
6. Broken
7. Invincible
8. Rebel Train
9. Livin’ The Life
10. Back To Hell
Lineup:
Jason Crosson – Lead vocals, guitars, keys
Joel McDonald – Lead and rhythm guitars
Jordan McDonald – Drums
Dario Bortolin – Bass
Jessica Wolff – Lead and backing vocals on Unconditional Love
Record Label: Metalapolis Records
     


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Edited 17 August 2018
 

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