Album Review : Revival Black – Step In Line

Review by Peter Coates –

Revival Black are a classic sounding hard rock band, striking out of the cultural heartland that is Liverpool, England sometime in 2018, out of the ashes of Black Cat Bones.

They are signed to management agency, TMR and have initiated a sonic incursion on the public with their 10-song debut album – STEP IN LINE – released on Friday 11 October 2019.

I am a bit late to the Revival, but with their own brand of honest rock n roll, drawing upon the classic sound of the 70’s with a strong foothold in the modern day, the band have firmly planted themselves within `The New Wave of Classic Rock` as yet another quality outfit.

The band has just released the title track of the album as the latest single, and it is a great example of the variety of quality riffs that the band are developing a bit of a reputation for, and Dan Byrne has an imposing set of pipes on him, well supported by the backing shouts from the rest of the band.  The track motors along thanks to some epic drumming from Ash Janes who must dread this one live!  The crushing power of the slowed-up riffs at the end of the track is just brutal!

The album opens up with Wide Awake which has a slightly bluesy feel to the guitars and sets the scene for the whole album, which is a stonkingly honest classic, slightly sleazy, blues rock album, with a power in the vocals that rivals Nathan James of Inglorious, a beast of a rhythm section, and twin lead guitars who just roll out riff after riff, and some glorious solos, with a slight nod to the classic Guns & Roses and Skid Row sounds.  Jamie Hayward kicks off So Alive on bass, and this has a real energy to it, reminding me of classic Heaven’s Basement – the riffs are relentless and there is a wicked solo here too.

Straight-up sleazy boogie hits you between the eyes with Give You The World which sidles along through the verse until that boogie comes back for the chorus, and features a really fitting if slightly chaotic set of backing vocals.  An earlier single in No Secrets No Lies features what sounds like dirty slide guitar and some military snare patterns, and a chorus that you would swear you had heard somewhere before.  Alan Rimmer and Adam Kerbache really work well together on guitars, with the riffs and breaks melding into a glorious raucous celebration of classic rock.  There is an inventive little vocal interlude from Dan before the band explodes into the solo and a closing chorus that then hits double-time to accelerate through to the crescendo.

A monster drum beat and groove that is like a super-sleazy Thunder or early Whitesnake, kicks off Midnight Oil and this just blazes along while Dan throws out some superb vocals, and there is a great bass-heavy middle-eight before the accents lead into yet another slashing solo and a return to the riffing, and then back again to the final verse /  chorus.  There is such a mature variety in the song structures here that it is easy to forget this is a debut album of a pretty young band!

All I Wanna Do is another rip-roaring rocker, and sees the whole band let rip in turn, with some searing vocals, cracking drumming, and a couple of solos all competing for attention.  Hold Me Down is out of the Black Stone Cherry songbook, which is not uncommon for a whole load of UK rock bands from the past 5 years – such an influential band for the NWOCR scene, while struggling somewhat back at home in the US!   The party goes up yet another notch with the old school Lizzy meets Quo thrash-boogie of Silverline that features a neat hook-line in the chorus, and the guitars go crazy on the Wah pedal!  This really is quality rock’n’roll – a party anthem to rival anything Airbourne have come up with!  

Penultimate track is The River which is another groove-rocker with a bit of a southern-rock feel, and some harmonica to add to the overall feel.  The album closes with the new single Step In Line, and I am left wondering where the weak track was – and clearly the answer is that they left it on the studio floor – an absolute cracker of an album and coupled with some pretty good production (from my digital copy) this has a an overall huge sound that sounds better the louder you play it!

Dan Byrne – Lead Vocals
Alan Rimmer – Lead Guitar / Rhythm Guitar
Adam Kerbache – Rhythm Guitar / Lead Guitar / Backing Vocals
Jamie Hayward – Bass / Backing Vocals
Ash Janes – Drums / Backing Vocals

Endorsed by:
Charvel Guitars, Gretsch Guitars, EVH Amplification, Blackstar Amplification, London Drum Stick Co, Cloven Hoof Rum

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