Latest updates:

We hope you enjoy your visit here. Please join or login if you have joined before.

MT @ Facebook

Not logged in

Users online

53 guests

Welcome to our newest member, willtravers

Iconic - Second Skin Award winner

Second Skin
by Kevin Lewis at 01 August 2022, 3:46 PM

ICONIC is a American super-group formed by a group of varied musicians from different bands, some of whom have worked together at times in the past. Featuring members of INGLORIOUS, WHITESNAKE, OZZY OSBOURNE, and STRYPER, this is a band of seasoned player who can all craft great Rock and Metal songs on their own; together, they write some incredibly catchy music. Frontiers Music SRL released Second Skin on June 17, 2022.

The record opens with “Run “As Fast as You Can),” a song that answers the question, “what would a STRYPER/WHITESNAKE blend sound like?” You have the Joel Hoekstra riffing with the Michael Sweet lead work, creating a wild sounding mixture that is aided by the Nathan James/Michael Sweet vocal duels. The guitars are heavy but stay more into the Hard Rock realm than anything else. The rhythm is as solid as any you will find on the radio today. Marco and Tommy are both absolutely legendary!

Ready For Your Love” is another radio friendly, rough riffed guitar driven track that really channels the bands influences in the classic hard rock genre. “Second Skin” is a bit heavier but has the keyboards under the guitars to temper the heaviness and give it the mass appeal of so much that came out of the 80s. These are songs made for arena stages. This is the music festivals are built around.

There is, according to the 80s formula, a required ballad for this record. “All I Need” fills that role. The guitars are heavy enough to actually call this a power ballad if you prefer. There is nothing wrong with either classification, it’s really a matter of taste. Let’s let the experts debate the difference. The guitar solo is subdued and melodic, fitting into the texture of the song beautifully. If Hoekstra had gone full shredder, it would have sounded odd. Instead, he measured this one out perfectly.

Moving down the track list, we get “This Way,” a mid-tempo semi-ballad. Heavier on the keyboards, this is yet another song with an uplifting theme. You wouldn’t necessarily expect anything too dark with Michael Sweet’s involvement. Forty years in the music business has not dampened his faith, nor his desire to deliver a positive message to the fans.

The last song on this disc is the sultry “Enough of Your Love,” a very WHITESNAKE styled tune with a heavy blues rock influence. The guitar work is pure silky tones and exquisite lead work. The rhythm is mid-tempo in pace and made to hold those guitars. The solo work is stunning. It is no wonder Joel Hoekstra is considered one of the top classic rock guitarists in the world. He shows what he’s made of on this one better than any other song on the record.

Ultimately, this ends up being an album that has a more Classic Rock sound than STRYPER, but less innuendo-laden than much of the classic WHITESNAKE material, so you get more of a polite, thoughtful version of the latter band while maintaining that style beautifully. This is a solid Hard Rock album. The compositions are really good and sound true to the era. It’s something that will please fans of arena rock and will play well on classic rock radio stations.

This is most likely the musical outlet for some of these guys who are in bands dominated by another personality or geared toward a different genre of music. I think these bands flourished during the pandemic because it gave them time to coordinate and collaborate. There are tons of records that came out the last two years with all-star lineups and killer songs. Touring may have been stopped, but the creativity was not. This is another excellent example of great musicians with time and talent getting together and putting out a cool record that might not have happened otherwise.

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

4 Star Rating

1. Run (As Fast as You Can)
2. Ready for Your Love
3. Second Skin
4. All I Need
5. Nowhere to Run
6. Worlds Apart
7. All About
8. This Way
9. Let You Go
10. It Ain’t Over
11. Enough of Your Love
Nathan James – Vocals
Marco Mendoza – Bass
Tommy Aldridge – Drums
Joel Hoekstra – Guitar
Michael Sweet – Guitar/Vocals
Record Label: Frontiers Music SRL


You do not have permission to rate

Metal Temple © 2000-2014
Yiannis Mitsakos

Designed, Implemented and Hosted by PC Green