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Tygers Of Pan Tang
Released: 2012, http://www.mwaweb.com/rocksector.htm
All that is left of the original band is guitarist Robert Weir, but that has not stopped them from continuing to release albums through the new millennium. The band has reunited with near legendary producer Chris Tsangarides, the man that produced the band’s two best known slabs of NWOBHM in WILD CAT and SPELLBOUND. Much like those magical years in the early 80s, the Tygers continue to release high quality music on their new album AMBUSH. Unfortunately, few are taking notice, and the breakthrough that eluded them 30 years ago continues to remain out of their grasp today.
Fortunately for you and me, the band could give a damn. AMBUSH is an album that stylistically is not far removed from those early albums, albeit with a fuller and better production. Album lead-off “Keeping Me Alive” is the longest track, and it takes awhile to get going after an acoustic intro. However vintage NWOBHM rhythms are on display, with Italian vocalist Jacopo Meille complementing the mid-paced chugs with a comforting mid-range tone himself. From start to finish this is a strong album, with well-written songs bolstered by melodic and riff-centric guitar work. Even album closer “Speed” is a fantastic track, the band maintaining the momentum through the entire album in what is probably the closest to a throwback track to SPELLBOUND or WILD CAT.
There are no glaring weaknesses on this album. Guitar solos, rhythms and arrangements are all of a high caliber here. Perhaps in places I caught myself pining for an occasional gallop, and there is not much to consider heavy here. However, the lack of face-melting riffs is more than compensated with the evident attention to writing memorable and logical songs. While AMBUSH will not deliver the band to the glory days of yore, it will lead many an aged metal head to crack a smile, and remember the excitement of those initial NWOBHM days. Incidentally, this album is for those aged fans of Saxon, Toyko Blade, and Angel Witch, but also NWOBHM fans in general.
1. Keeping Me Alive
2. These Eyes
3. One Of A kind
4. Rock & Roll Dream
6. Man On Fire
7. Play To Win
8. Burning Desire
9. Hey Suzie
10. Mr. Indispensable
Jacopo Meille - Vocals
Robb Weir - Guitar Dean Robertson - Guitar
Gav Gray - Bass
Craig Ellis - Drums
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