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Vandallus - On the High Side

On the High Side
by Jessica R. Harman at 08 September 2016, 11:46 AM

VANDALLUS is the creation of a couple of other bands including MIDNIGHT and ETERNAL LEGACY. However, there is a distinct difference in this band from the others; VANDALLUS has a late 70’s early 80’s hard heavy rock feel. I’m talking A.O.R. and hard rock hair bands, although that isn’t so much of the intention of the band, but it’s something that came with the territory. They were created in Cleveland, OH, United States and released their first full-length album “On The High Side” on 6.5.2016. The album comes in with nine tracks and a listening time of almost thirty-seven minutes.

The open track “Rat” is a heavy instrumental opener track of fifty-eight seconds that gives the listener an idea of the rock they are about to receive. The guitar riffs are the epitome of early 80’s rock and they just don’t let up through out the entirety of the album. “Break The Storm” is the second track from “On The High Side” that flows nicely from the opener. One of the best things in an album is a clean flow from one track to another, especially an instrumental to a full track. This transition is seamless. While everything seems to just connect on every level in this track, the heaviness of the bass makes this bass lover’s heart happy. It’s low and doomy, but paired with the guitars and the drums; the over all feel of the track is energetic.

Track three, title track “On The High Side”, is lathered with sick guitar riffs and covered in melody. It’s one of the most technical songs on the album and also has a heavier sound that compliments its technicality nicely. “Who’s Chasing Me” is a less energetic and more melodic track on the album. This is definitely a track you would hear on your local classic rock radio station. Still just as musically beautiful as the rest of the tracks, but there is a total different feeling of this track making a little more unique than the rest of the tracks.

Track six, “Back To The Grind” is also a high energy and fun track. The riffage is another pretty unique element of this track as well as vocals. The vocal range from higher to lower pitch and screams the whole heavy rock hair band days. The closing track of “On The High Side”, “A Fool You’re Right”, finalizes this album wonderfully. Everything in it is cohesive and satisfying. It starts with a nice instrumental intro of about fifty seconds that shows the strength of each element, and then softly brings in the vocals which steady grow. This track isn’t as energetic but it does have a ton of technical play and melodic love threaded throughout. This album is a fun, heavy, energetic and hard album that is resurrected from the 1980’s.

Songwriting: 10
Originality: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 10

4 Star Rating

1. Rat
2. Break The Storm
3. On The High Side
4. Who's Chasing Me
5. Running Lost
6. Back To The Grind
7. Get Out
8. On Top Of The World
9. A Fool You're Right
Jason Vanek – Vocals and guitar
Shaun Vanek - Guitar, drums, and bass
Steve Dukuslow – Drums
Tim Frederick – Bass and backing vocals
Record Label: High Roller Records


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Edited 31 March 2023

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