Wheels Of Purgatory

Written by: PP on 10/02/2011 06:36:18

Motorjesus have been around for over two decades, yet "Wheels Of Purgatory" is merely their third full length overall, and their first in over four years. You might have noticed a decent amount of hype surrounding these Germans from their previous two records, all warranted if you ask me, because it has been far too long since we've heard a heavy-hitting, groovy, leather-induced modern rock album that can't immediately be connected with phrases like "sell out", while simultaneously displaying great songwriting talent and ability to stick to the listener's mind like plague. I can think of maybe Foo Fighters and Wolfmother off the top of my head, and although there are a handful more, rock bands certainly aren't in abundance at the moment.

What's most interesting about "Wheels Of Purgatory", though, is its ability to combine classic rumble 'n' roll like that of Motörhead or Mötley Crüe together with modern style radio friendly hard rock that isn't too distant from Nickelback, Default, Hinder and so forth. Motorjesus are really taking the best of two worlds on the record, utilizing the great, modern sounding production and catchy, anthemic choruses of the latter (just listen to "Fist Of The Dragon") while keeping their gritty rock'n'roll image and edgy sound completely intact. The resulting package is ready for some serious airtime in radios as implicated by the seriously mainstream rock sound in places, but yet it's still raucous and cocky enough to maintain a feeling of danger and unpredictability in the sound, precisely because the sound hasn't been over polished and some rawness has been left in place to give the guitars power. To me, the offering presented by Motorjesus carries the very essence of rock'n'roll in its heart, or the sonic equivalent of a heart at least.

To draw a more concrete comparison, think of the mid 90s tracks by Metallica, and you're pretty close to a song like "Fuel The Warmachine". It has a metallic base to its guitars, but yet the melodies are easily accessible and entirely fitting underneath the modern hard rock tag. "West Of Hell", on the other hand, is as mainstream rock as songs come, but again, it never feels like the band are selling out for the big bucks rather than just concentrating on executing ass-kicking rock songs for the sake of the music. At fourteen tracks, though, "Wheels Of Purgatory" could've benefitted from slashing three tracks or so to shorten the record. It would certainly give the album even more of a kick, and to make sure the listener won't get bored with their sound by the end of the record. That's a minor problem though, as overall Motorjesus have released a solid rock record.


Download: Fist Of The Dragon, West Of Hell
For the fans of: Motörhead, old Foo Fighters, Nickelback, Supercharger, Black River
Listen: Myspace

Release date 08.02.2011
Art Of Fact Records

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