Written by: MAK on 23/04/2016 11:36:03

Mark Tremonti is undoubtedly one of the most well-known guitarists in modern music, especially after last year’s release of “Cauterize”. While I had my reservations that it was essentially a heavier Alter Bridge album, it still slaughtered all expectations and pushed the songwriting talents of the axeman into all sorts of popularity. Now with part two, “Dust” soon to be released, Tremonti is ready to perhaps distance his solo material from the other bands he represents.

“Dust” picks up where “Cauterize” left off, opening track “My Last Mistake” launches into the expected heavy riffs Tremonti has become known for. Instantly we have an anthem, Tremonti’s enchanting voice is equally as dominant as his fretwork, the combination of his big hooks and powerful vocals instantly make you want more. “The Cage” fulfils in the same manner the opener did, pushing the verses atmosphere darker and heavier. This just makes the chorus even more uplifting and heartfelt, and Tremonti’s guitar technicality in the solo never ceases to amaze. Neither does Garrett Whitlock's machine gun like drum work, his beats are relentless throughout.

The heavy verse to anthemic chorus formula becomes somewhat of a trend as “Once Dead” unleashes some of the most brutal riffs of the album along with a yet more captivating vocal hooks in the chorus. Title-track “Dust” then stands out like a sore thumb. “Dust” is a lot softer and balladesque, this is where the Myles Kennedy influence in Tremonti’s voice really shines. The vocals switch from a soothing tone in the verse to a big enthralling atmosphere in the chorus, both are quite beautiful to listen to. The nice guitar melodies and more of Tremonti’s fascinating and complicated solos continue to impress. There is no doubt that this track will be a live favourite.

Throughout the rest of this release, Tremonti balances the heavy, anthemic and atmospheric influences in a sublime fashion. What is more spectacular is that there is no filler track on the album, every song has the potential to be an anthemic hit or a huge rock ballad. “Tore My Heart Out” for one showcases the best of Tremonti’s entrancing soft side and his desire to play crushing riffs at any given moment.

After “Cauterize” I didn’t think I could be any more impressed with Tremonti’s musicianship. But, everything that stood out on last year’s effort has improved greatly on “Dust”. The Guitar work is both heavier and alluring, the choruses are more hooking, the melodies and the vocals are equally glamorous and powerful in places. All in all, this is festival headlining material.


Download: My Last Mistake, Dust, Tore My Heart Out
For The Fans Of: Alter Bridge, SOiL, Black Stone Cherry

Release date 29.04.2016
Fret12 Records

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