The UK doesn’t really have a reputation for producing great sleaze rock bands – well, certainly, not ones who could challenge the supremacy of the likes of the Crüe, LA Guns, GNR or Cinderella in their prime. The likes of The Quireboys, Wildhearts and Dogs D’Amour always have been more suited to barroom scenarios, with their brand of sleaze being particularly British in its humour and downright dirtiness – a bit too gnarly for the squeaky clean mass market.
However, a new generation of sleazers are threatening to change that situation, led by the likes of the stunning Million Dollar Reload (OK, I’ll admit to being a tad biased when it comes to my Norn Iron brothers), the amazing Hangfire and the highly promising The Burning Crows. You can now add Knock Out Kaine to that growing list of new challengers on the block, thanks to this highly impressive debut.
The album sets it’s stall out right from the off with the title track, which has the words “party anthem” just written all over it – little wonder as it’s named after a certain house of ill repute the quartet used to frequent… built on a huge stadium-filling riff from Jimmy Bohemian, it’s straight out of the Danger Danger / Kix / Shotgun Messiah stable. ‘Liquor Up’ has the sort of bump and grind groove that makes you want to do just that, with vocalist Dean Foxx displaying the sort of swagger reminiscent of a young Joe Elliott crossed with Michael Monroe.
Lee Byrne and Danny Krash keep the rhythms pumping, allowing the guitarist and vocalist to strut and stroll across the hooks and melodies, of which there are abundance of both, especially on the likes of ‘Set The Night On Fire’, which is the sort of song that serves notice to the likes of Def Leppard that maybe it’s time to hang up their guitars and let the new generation take their place in the spotlight!
Other highlights include the dirty acoustic led ‘Backstreet Romeo’, which has a very Thunder feel to its dynamic, the beautiful, haunting ‘Coming Home’, with Foxx’s rasping vocal bringing a heartbreaking quality to the poignant lyric, and the downright cheekiness of ‘Going Down (She Goes).
The overall result is a superb old school sleaze rock album that stands comfortably alongside the aforementioned British contemporaries as well as the new generation of European purveyors of the genre, such as Crazy Lixx and H.E.A.T.[10/10]
1. The Welcome
2. House Of Sins
3. Liquor Up
4. Little Crystal
5. Set The Night On Fire
6. Backstreet Romeo
8. Coming Home
9. Going Down (She Goes)
11. Somebody Save me
12. Moving On
13. Coming Home (Radio Edit)
‘House Of Sins’ is out now via Dust On The Tracks.
You can catch Knock Out Kaine on the following dates:
November 28th – Yardbirds, Grimsby
December 6th – Clyde Auditorium, Glasgow (supporting Status Quo)
February 1st – The Boulevard, Wigan
February 8th – The Salutation Inn, Nottingham
February 10th – The Diamond, Sutton-In-Ashfield
April 6th – HRH AOR Festival, Rotherham