Reviewed – 2021
Released – 2018, Heaven & Hell
Rating – 4/5
Reviewer – JP
The Texas Metal Outlaws are not to be confused with the Texas Metal Alliance or the Texas Hipper Coalition or newcomers Texas Taliban or the Texas Murder Crew. I guess Texas is a pretty big place so there is room for all these gangs/bands in the desert.
The Texas Metal Outlaws are a bit of a spin-off of Ignitor. Guitarist and founder Robert Williams Guitarist Robert Williams was kind enough to send along the latest album along with a copy of his other project Ignitor. Watch for my interview with him shortly as well.
Starting with the album cover, it is pretty much perfect. It’s hilarious and perfectly executed by Canadian Yannick Bouchard also known for his work with Ancient Empire, Blazon Stone, King Diamond and more. Watch for the Armadillo too! Shades of ‘Blind In Texas’ anyone? Speaking of the W.A.S.P. classic that would have fit nicely as a bonus track on this all too brief eight song, 36-minute album.
As mention the Texas Metal Outlaws are a bit of a spin-off of Ignitor but this time they bring a whole ton of guests. There are 20 guests who contribute with Ignitor men Williams and Lawrence doing the bulk of the song-writing, production and so on. I don’t want to overshadow the good work done by Williams and Lawrence but you have past and/or present members of Manowar, Riot, Helstar, Dangerous Toys and many more who drop by for a quick solo, lay down some drum tracks or take a turn to belt out a song behind the microphone. You might think that might make it sound a bit schizophrenic but it actually sounds pretty cohesive.
These guys are some bad hombres (as least that is what it says on the CD) and there is a loose and lethal sense of drunken fun that prevails on these sessions. If the bountiful photos in the 20-page booklet of boys hanging out in the studio drinking beer are any indication, it looks like it was a lot of fun. Williams even pens a nice introductory message about this tribute to the titans of Texas Metal.
From the self-referencing opening track, to ‘Malt Liquor Maniac’ to the re-worked cover of the old Burt Baccarach tune, ‘What Are Friends For’ this whole thing was sloppy fun. The originals are great, the couple of cover tunes are great, the playing are drenched in the spirit of sweaty Metal and Rock.
There is a bit of mystique, or legend about Texas; the people, the land, the way things get done and this is a quite special project that let’s other have a little glimpse into that world. Respect!
1. Texas Metal Outlaws
2. Malt Liquor Maniac
3. Rebel Years
4. Running from the Law (Riot cover)
5. Sound of Scorn
6. Within the Spell
7. Echoes of Memories
8. That’s What Friends are For
Orlando Logan Olivero-Vocals (track 8)
Jason McMaster-Vocals (tracks 1, 4, 8)
Mark Zammaron-Vocals (track 5)
Michael Paul Toupin-Vocals (track 6)
James Rivera-Vocals (track 7)
Carlos Zema-Vocals (track 3)
Mike Solid-Vocals (track 4)
Robb Bockman-Guitars (track 2)
Al Berlanga-Guitar Solo (track 6)
Ross the Boss Friedman-Guitar Solo (track 3)
Larry Barragán-Guitar Solo (track 7)
Brendon Bigelow-Bass (track 8)
Donnie van Tavern-Bass (tracks 1, 4)
Billy Dansfiell-Bass (track 3)
Stan Martinez-Bass (track 6)
Stony Grantham-Bass (track 7)
Cody Gilliland-Drums (tracks 3, 7)
Scott Palmer-Drums (tracks 2, 6)
Felix Griffin-Drums (tracks 1, 4)
Pat Doyle-Drums (tracks 5, 8)