Released: 2012, Frontiers Records
Dokken’s a band that needs no introduction. The name conjures up thoughts of ‘80s-heyday guitar fireworks, catchy riffs, huge hair, and embarrassing outfits. The thing is, despite a few missteps, the band has always had the musical goods to outweigh the image. Personally, I’ve never been more than a casual fan of the band, and the only album I still own is TOOTH & NAIL. I’ve heard all of their albums though, and didn’t particularly enjoy their last effort, LIGHTNING STRIKES AGAIN.
However, BROKEN BONES grabbed me immediately with the fiery opener, “Empire” which is a fast rocker miles better than anything the band has done since the song “Erase the Slate”. From there the great riffs keep on coming with the title track and the catchy “Best of Me”. After three songs I was about ready to give the album the coveted 5/5 rating, but unfortunately the quality doesn’t stay quite so high throughout the entire album. That said, there’s not a single actively bad song to be heard, but songs like “Victim of the Crime” or the dull “Today” are certainly skippable.
As for the band, they are on fire throughout the album, Jon Levin in particular impressed me with is scorching riffs and solos. Sadly, Don Dokken’s vocals continue to fade into the background – the man just cannot sing as he used to. His vocals are still good though, and he projects enough charisma to lead the band effectively.
All in all, I was quite impressed with BROKEN BONES. It’s an all around solid hard rock album that I have no doubt will please the band’s fans, and, if there is any justice, win them a few new ones as well.