Released: 2008, Shadow World Records
Reviewer: Luxi Lahtinen
Nothing can beat a good hard rock, except good sex, perhaps?
According to some quotes taken from label´s press kit, "Million Dollar Beggars take you on a trip to Los Angeles, circa 1985...", "This group represents everything about rock 'n' roll at its very best: Energy and passion. If you like Skid Row, Mötley Crüe and Bon Jovi classics from the 80's, you'll fuckin´ love the Million Dollar melodies, huge choruses and ocean sized sounds!".
Rather brave words from a very self-confident label, I think. How much does all this hype hold water about these six Finnish hardrockers´ debut album, is of course a whole other story.
Well, for their advantage, these brave words carry and hold more and way better water than one could think of at first. Million Dollar Beggars´ hard rock isn´t - not surprisingly, anything innovative or groundbreaking or anything like that (as it shouldn´t be in the first place, I guess), but it definitely is catchy, hot, full of nice hooks and ready to drop some of your (girls) knees against a dance floor. Sure thing, the band´s lads have listened to their totally worn-out Bon Jovi, Skid Row and Mötley Crüe albums carefully over the years - and gotten influenced, sucked and adopted shamelessly some of those magical moments that some of the most known ass-shaking hard rock acts from LA used to have on their albums back in the day. It´s all about aping and copycatting the sounds of ´big brothers´ in Million Dollar Beggars´ case, and I don´t see anything wrong about that as at least every card has been set on the table in advance regarding these fellows´ strongest inspirations band-wise. They follow the paths of their ´big brothers´ somewhat loyally and determinedly - and it works for them, which is a good thing. Micko Hell (what the hell... now that´s a hilarious nickname for the band´s frontman - let's not talk about the other nicknames of the band members either) has got a good voice for hard rock, and as the rest of the band members seem to know their roles and tasks very well in this band as well, it all works out for them surprisingly well - and makes at least some of us are sweating in our leather pants in the nostalgic spirit of old times.
However, in order that Million Dollar Beggars could possibly sound even more convincing with their heavily ´80s-tinged hard rock, they should give a good ´goodbye kick´ straight to the butt of band´s keyboard player. Unfortunately the keyboard sound seems to cut away some of that necessary classic old vibe from their songs so that they could be related to the past LA scene in the best and most convincing way. Just bring things back to the basics, and you´ll kick ass way better with the band, I suppose.
So, if you are into catchy, ruthlessly aping LA-sounding hard rock made by these strongly rockin´ Finns, you might well be interested in checking this out. It´s your call now anyway... ;o)