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Garagedays - Passion Of Dirt

Passion Of Dirt
by Matt Coe at 26 April 2014, 1:19 AM

Founded in 2005 by guitarist / vocalist Marco Kern to dedicate themselves to an 80’s Metal style, Austria’s GARAGEDAYS have released a couple of demos and a debut album “Dark and Cold” in 2011. Over the past year they worked on the follow up – assembling quite the impressive team of musicians behind the boards as PRIMAL FEAR vocalist Ralf Scheepers produced most of the album, with KING DIAMOND guitarist Andy LaRocque producing the guitars as well as mixing/ mastering the final recording.

All the star power in the world doesn’t matter if the songwriting and performances fail to match up. Which is where I feel GARAGEDAYS is in a bit of a teeter-totter situation on “Passion of Dirt”. Musically the band are firmly entrenched in that 80’s Metal / Hard Rock mold – power riffs that ring from a synchronized, street level approach, easy to understand chorus work and straightforward drum patterns occasionally fueled from a double bass perspective. A slow building ballad like “The Unknown Feeling” certainly evokes a spaghetti western meets L.A. Guns feel, the bluesy leads of Rene Auer a great compliment to Marco Kern’s whiskey soaked melody outlook.

“Bleeding Days” gets the blood pumping in an ACCEPT meets W.A.S.P. manner, while “Never Give Up” is an up tempo anthem that wouldn’t have been out of place on any European traditional metal effort during the mid-1980’s. All well and good I suppose, but the tin can snare tone out of drummer Matthias Mai leaves a lot to be desired in terms of a ‘Heavy Metal' punch and I must admit that Marco’s range is limited, the higher screams on “Road to Madness” like a warbling Udo trying to shake off a flu virus.

Overall, their sound has one foot in early METALLICA/ TESTAMENT riff-o-rama (which probably explains their moniker), and another in the good time hard rock of the L.A. scene. Capable players for certain- I’m just not totally convinced that the songwriting possesses the right energetic hook / melody combination for wide acceptance. Maybe GARAGEDAYS needs to be more critical of their songwriting on the next release.

3 Star Rating

1. It Rules
2. Never Give Up
3. Road to Madness
4. Razorblade
5. Passion of Dirt
6. Streets
7. Bleeding Days
8. The Unknown Feeling
9. Scars of Life
10. Inject
Marco Kern – Vocals / Guitar
Rene Auer – Guitar
Dominik Eder – Bass
Matthias Mai – Drums
Record Label: Rocksector Records


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