Laaz Rockit

City's Gonna Burn (re-release)

Written by: PP on 19/10/2009 19:30:27

A little while ago I was introduced to Lääz Rockit, an old school bay area thrash metal outfit who made their name during the 80s, through a re-release of their 1985 sophomore album "No Stranger To Danger". It was an interesting time portal to an era long ago passed and one that even today keeps spawning derivative bands influenced by the past greats, even if it did feel a little dated almost 25 years after it's original release date. Today it's time to take another history lesson from the same band, this time in the form of their debut album "City's Gonna Burn" that was released way back in 1984 - one year earlier than this scribe entered the world! Quite impressive.

"No Stranger To Danger" was a somewhat balladic heavy metal record that had hints of thrash metal in it, whereas "City's Gonna Burn" feels much heavier and angrier in comparison (in 1980s standards), much more like a real thrash metal album if you will. The production's still as awful as it ever was in the 80s - perhaps even worse than on their next album - with stadium size echo surrounding each sound, giving the guitar a blazing ring and the vocals a massive rock star vibe. But you can't blame the band for the lack of technology back then. What you can blame on them, however, is an underdeveloped song writing skill, which the majority of this album demonstrates. Discounting the decent album opener carrying the same title, there really aren't any "Backbreaker"s or "Spread From The Fire"s on this record. The riffs just don't hit as hard, the choruses don't stick, and to borrow a very valid point from my fellow scribe TL's recent Europe review: it's just a very typical 80s metal record from a band that never quite 'made it' in the vein of Iron Maiden, AC/DC or even Metallica. At least not yet on this album, because later the band enjoyed moderate critical acclaim.

Otherwise, the re-release follows exactly the same format as the other one: nothing has been touched on the album. No new artwork, no re-mastering, and just two bonus tracks (both live) have been included to create the illusion that somehow this record's value for money for existing and/or new fans. But considering I just reviewed a re-issue of The Red Shore's ten-track 2008 album which had 9 bonus tracks (and none of them live versions of old tracks), I just can't find it in me to recommend this record, or rather the re-release of it, to anyone. Just about the only positive about "City's Gonna Burn" is how much better it makes its successor look.


Download: City's Gonna Burn
For the fans of: Metal Church, Attacker
Listen: Myspace

Release date 26.06.2009
Massacre Records

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