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Jack Russell's Great White
He Saw It Comin'
Released: 2017, Frontiers Records
Most rock fans will be familiar with the ugly split between vocalist Jack Russell and his Great White band mates, which dominated heavy music websites five years ago. Thankfully all the hubbub has died down and both sides have moved on (for now…). Great White moved fast and added singer Terry Ilous and released ELATION in 2012 which was OK. 2013’s 30 YEARS LIVE was better but still not quite the same as the glory years. Through it all, Russell stayed relatively quiet, focusing on his health and playing gigs. Finally the stars aligned and Jack’s back with his first “solo” Great White record.
HE SAW IT COMIN’ kicks off with a classic of a rock song in the rollicking “Sign of the Times”. It’s a catchy, upbeat track that shows off the band and highlights Russell’s voice – older yes, but he’s still got it! Moving deeper into the album, it becomes obvious that Russell and co. have made an album to please themselves first and foremost as well as the fans that have stuck by him. Why? There’s a freedom in the performances and sound of the record where it feels as if Russell needed this to get the weight of his past off his shoulders. Particularly in the lyrics, some of which can be read as intensely personal (“My Addiction”, the title track).
Musically, this is actually a soft-rocking affair at times with quiet, almost acoustic “rockers” and a number of ballads. The thing is though, the songs are so well-written that it didn’t bother me at all. Just reading the song titles, I can immediately think of a cool chorus, catchy melody, or guitar riff. Hell, there’s even an a cappella song and I’ve probably played it more than any other from the record! There’s something here from every facet of Russell’s career and somehow it fits together perfectly.
There are definitely going to be Great White fans disappointed with HE SAW IT COMIN’ – the music just isn’t the same as it was back in 1988. So what? Listen with open ears and mind and you just might find that this is the best-written, effortlessly listenable album that Jack Russell has ever made. Welcome back Jack.
1. Sign of the Times
2. She Moves Me
4. Love Don’t Live Here
5. My Addiction
6. Anything for You
7. He Saw It Comin’
8. Don’t Let Me Go
9. Spy vs. Spy
10. Blame it on the Night
Jack Russell: Vocals
Tony Montana: Guitar, Keyboards
Robby Lochner: Guitar
Dan McNay: Bass
Dicki Fliszar: Drums
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