Title: “Humanity Hour 1”
Label: New Door Records
Release Date: 8/28/2007
Genre: Hard Rock
Hard Rock concept albums are nothing new these days so why shouldn’t the venerated Scorpions give us their own take on the format with their newest album “Humanity Hour 1”. According to what I have read, the album’s premise tells of humans and androids in an do or die struggle for Earth and while I was incredibly intrigued by the subject matter being a diehard Science Fiction fan for many years, I admit a level of surprise by the lack of lyrics to read which could actually explain the tale to me as the music played. We get simple phrases from each song as opposed to the entire script along with some photos that show the Scorpions looking far younger than most of their audience. I quickly forgave them about this oversight when I realized that this was not the Scorpions that I had slowly grown complacent with over the last couple of albums as they instead presented one melodic rocker after another. Now let’s understand that there is nothing similar to “No One Like You” or even a “Rock You Like A Hurricane” in terms of hit potential on this album, but there is some really great stuff here that shows a band who is aging gracefully along with their long time fans. There is a heavy number in “You’re Lovin’ Me To Death” and this is also perhaps the quickest paced tune but its no “Coming Home”.
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Label: Escapi Music
Release Date: 9/12/2006
Genre: Punk & Roll
Reading the press release for Kottak you find the band cited as being “Green Day meets Cheap Trick on a bad day”. I felt it was amusing but a bit much if you asked me but after a couple of quick listens it seems like that was the vibe that the group was aiming at. Founded by James Kottak (drummer for Kingdom Come and Scorpions) who now calls himself Jimmy Ratchitt and Tommy Lee’s sister Athena the group does have some catchy numbers on their Escapi Music debut “Therupy”. Power Punk is not as abrasive as its old school counterpart is and generally has a little more melody as opposed to chaos making it up and with songs like “Miss You” the band shows a contemporary Rock basis. It could easily be a radio hit if they played their cards right. The album opens up with a rousing rendition of Cindy Lauper’s “Money Changes everything” and while I never expected to find myself bopping to one of her tunes the folks in Kottak surely make you change your stance on that. Joining Jimmy and Athena are Dave Whiston (lead guitar), & Rev Jones (bass) and together it’s a solid quartet that deliver their brand of music with determination. Some of the more memorable numbers are “Ripped”, “Song That Wont go Away” and “Life Support” but I have to be honest that the rendition of the Scorpions classic “Holiday” was awful in my eyes. Overall the album is decent and if catchy, quirky riffs and lyrics get your attention then you might really like this one. Tommy’s Sister Athena is a rocking drummer and it was cool to see what else a drummer like Jimmy could do when stepping off the drum kit. Give it a listen or catch a show if they come to town. It seems like good live music and having seen Rev Jones with MSG know that he is a killer player on stage and fun to watch.
Continue reading “Therupy” by Kottak