Lillian Axe

Sad Day On Planet Earth

Written by: PP on 31/08/2009 23:31:15

Returning readers will surely have taken note of my common rage attacks on generic heavy metal bands who all sound identical to one another. The worst thing about bands like these is that they probably know it themselves as well, but they just don't care because that's what they want to sound like. To the detriment of us reviewers. Anyway, until a copy of "Sad Day On Planet Earth" arrived in my inbox an unacceptably long time ago, Lillian Axe were one of those bands that encountered my axe, but this album has, if not outright blown me away, at least placed a smile on my face, because it proves that even the oldest of hard rock / heavy metal warriors can still put out solid material.

Essentially, Lillian Axe were never really a heavy metal outfit, more than a hair metal-meets-classic 80s rock/hard rock band. However, there were loads of moments on their previous record where it was perfectly justified to lump them into the generic heavy metal category, but fortunately all those have been slaughtered and buried away on "Sad Day On Planet Earth", giving way to a strictly classic rock & 80s hard rock sound instead. Take "Within Your Reach", for instance, which has a solo that could've been on a seminal Lynyrd Skynyrd album, or the absolutely mind blowing title track which has to be the best track in the genre for as long as I can remember. And there are a lot more moments where I'm inclined to think along those lines ("Down Below The Ocean", "Jesus Wept" etc).

Throughout the record, Lillian Axe dwell between heavy-hitting hard rock ("Hibernate", for instance), and the balladic, Skynyrd-esque stuff, often combining the two in the same song, providing enough variance to keep the listener interested. On top of that, the songwriting is at a level where you can hear the 20+ years of songwriting experience behind the instruments, which translates into excellent tracks that you don't mind returning to time and time again. That has to be considered a great achievement particularly in this genre, where most bands make me roll my eyes and move on after just one or two listens in. Even if hard rock / hair metal isn't normally your thing, "Sad Day On Planet Earth" might be the one album you'll make friends with.


Download: Sad Day On Planet Earth, Down Below The Ocean
For the fans of: Lynyrd Skynyrd, Y&T, Poison, Bon Jovi
Listen: Myspace

Release date 30.06.2009
Blistering Records

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