Released: 2008, Locomotive Records/Sound Pollution
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall
Randy Pipers Animal released their debut album two years ago and VIOLENT NEW BREED was received really well by the press and media. The band came to Scandinavia the year after in order to tour and to record their second album entitled VIRUS. The album has been ready for a while and since the recording sessions, things have happened in the band. Former bass player Jackie Livengood left the band and he was replaced by well-known Swedish bassist Nalle “Grizzly” Påhlsson. Now there are three Swedes in this five piece act.
The band continues delivering heavy and edgy melodic metal influenced by dirty sleaze/party metal. Some smaller changes in the music have been done as this album sounds a little more melodic and a little more aggressive compared to the debut. It still feels like the band has put some serious efforts into the music and the rest of material. Lead singer Lewis has certainly got his own singing style and his voice sounds like no other. He has both vocal range and power in his voice and partially he sounds like Lawless and he is the biggest reason why Randy Pipers Animal sometimes sound a lot like W.A.S.P. Both guitarists, Piper and Laney, complement each other and they deliver sharp riffs as well as more sensitive guitar play. The rhythm section with drummer Koleberg and the new bass player Påhlsson has definitely something going on. They contribute with a massive foundation built on heavy pounding drum play and roaring bass lines.
Amongst the 10 tracks the band has done a cover of the old The Cranberries hit “Zombie” which actually sounds really good. Just like the cover the rest of the songs are equally great and just as strong. “Cardiac Arrest”, “Can’t Stop”, “Crying Eagle” and “L.U.S.T” are a few of the more heavy songs on the album. All are fast, mean, aggressive and melodic tunes with a heavy groove and a fast and technical rhythm section. These songs are pure metal assaults!
The tempo slows down a bit on “Don’t Wanna Die”, “Unnatural High”, “Judgment Day”, “Who’s Next” and “Shoot To Kill” but they are just as heavy as the previous songs. Lewis shows an incredible nerve and feeling when he sings these songs and he is the perfect lead singer for this band. VIRUS is absolutely one of the top albums of this year and it’s gonna land a top spot on my best of list that’s for sure. The recording session took place in member Laney’s own studio called Platform Studio as well as the legendary Polar Music Studio. And Laney has also produced VIRUS and I guess no one will be surprised when you hear this flawless production. Laney has once again managed to create a genius production, that man can’t do anything wrong.
If you liked the debut album you’re gonna love VIRUS. The band has managed to upgrade their sound a notch on VIRUS. I really hope that Animal comes to Europe soon so we can take part and enjoy this force of nature live on stage. VIRUS is a must-buy and Animal has delivered one of the most solid albums this year. This VIRUS is taking over the world and you can run but you cannot hide!