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Hotel Diablo - The Return To Psycho California

Hotel Diablo
The Return To Psycho California
by Tomer "Tommy-Foxx" Darmon at 31 December 2012, 1:11 PM

I haven't decided about the right category to place HOTEL DIABLO. They are not what you would call a Hard Rock band though their musical roots seemed to were built upon it. This bunch of four from Hollywood passed a long way since 2011, and only recently released their debut "The Return To Psycho California" with a production touch of Gilby Clarke, Mike Starr and Mark Pelli.

"Taken", opening this machine, armed with a new alternative sound, fits very well to the common modern day sound, sort of the old Hard Rock rebirth. The heavy guitars sound and the divergent drumming tempo keeps on the interest of the song. The C part is neck breaking, pushing for a headbanging frenzy. "All These Years" is a good track, it has little bit of sadness attached but I guess that it is only the tension before the chorus that coming.

"What You Do To Me" is one of the great songs on the albums, a nice ballad that is also shared in an acoustic version. It is not the kind of banal and cheesy ballad that we all already heard, got some western roots with the guitar parts, reminded me little bit TESLA but in a newer version. I really got addicted to the song's chorus; I felt that Rick Stitch sang his heart out on this song. The guitar solo is not as impressive but serves just what the song needs. "Psycho California" is a great piece of Hard N’ Heavy based on a simple format but with so much energy in it, the verses are so tight right before the surge of power of the song coming out in the chorus. I really like C part on this one, so powerful and heavy. Yet what was missing is a killer guitar solo but I can handle with that for now.

"Bury You" is another great ballad, what can I say, HOTEL DIABLO know how to make nice ballads. It starts as a chill, preparing the listener to the upcoming chorus which was built to be slow tempo, played out smartly, striking at the end so powerfully. This is one of the things that made this song immortal. "Wicked Lines" reminded me little bit SAVAGE GARDEN with STONE TEMPLE PILOTS but on a rocking version. A good Alternative Rock song, the bass lines here written in the best way, it colorful the song, good work by Mike Duda and gives it another taste except of a regular bass lines that are common on Rock songs.

A little surprise is the cover song here "Wonderwall" of OASIS. I really don't know what they decided to pick this one for a cover. The performance is good but I felt that there isn’t really a direction to move far from the original performance. It sounds exactly the same except from the strong voice of Rick Stitch and the guitar solo. Sure it has a more rocking vibe in it than the original.

"Trigger" has a southern Alternative sound and built very well, the guitar are quietly in the verses until it gets additional depth by the singing. The solo is really great, you can feel the right energy of how making a good hard rock song. The quietly breaking part give the song a winning feeling, this is definitely one of the best tracks out of the album. Take this one.

4 Star Rating

1. Taken
2. All these Years
3. What You Do To Me
4. Psycho, California
5. Bury You*
6. Set It Off
7. Wicked Lines*
8. Wonderwall (Oasis Cover)
9. Trigger
10. What You Do To Me (alt)**
11. Bury You (alt)*
Rick Stitch- Vocals
Alex Grossi- Guitar
Mike Duda- Bass
Mike Dupke – Drums
Record Label: Scarlet Records


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