Last In Line, is a band formed by three original members of Dio; namely Guitarist Vivian Campbell, Drummer Vinny Appice and Bassist Jimmy Bain. They are joined by former Lynch Mob vocalist Andrew Freeman and keyboard player Claude Schnell.
Opening track ‘Devil In Me’ kicks off with a hard, heavy hitting riff, heavier than usual for a Dio track, more like Black Sabbath Dio era really. However we really need to stop comparing the band to Dio, as this is a band striving for success on the own merit.
The vocals are good, Andrew has a great range with power to back it up, very impressive, certainly better than I have heard him sing in Lynch Mob. The track has a classic 80’s Hard Rock vibe to it.
‘Martyr’ is very much ‘todays’ Hard Rock, easily sounding like a 80’s rock track, but with a much modern feel to it, a vibe that can be felt throughout the rest of the album.
‘Starmaker’ is an excellent track which has Freeman at his most melodic and powerful, only matched by an equally impressive super cool riff from Campbell and the majestic rhythm section of Bain and Appice.
The opening tracks high standard are then bettered with the massive ‘Burn This House Down’, then ‘I Am Revolution’ follows, this simple all out rocker really shows how fast and hard hitting the band can be, this will be a sure-fire live favorite if they ever decide to tour as it has a great sing-a-long chorus.
‘Blame It On Me’ features a hard hitting bass lines from Bain, and once again a fantastic piece of guitar playing from Mr Campell; He really can do no wrong on this album, full of off inventive passages and soaring solos that really do remind you of those Dio song’s from years ago.
Throughout the rest of the album, the standard of playing ( as you would expect ) is superb, with the monster rhythm section of Vinny and Jimmy laying the backbone for Vivian’s guitar playing, who’s solos are particularly impressive.
‘Already Dead’ is a fantastic hard rock track, simple in structure, yet very effective.
‘Curse The Day’, gives space for another stunning vocal performance from Freeman, as I have previously mentioned, I have not heard him sing better.
The Appice/Bain grove runs deep in ‘Orange Glow’ before the slow burning title track ‘Heavy Crown’ cools things down a bit.
The album closes as it opened, with a tight little rocker ‘The Sickness’; there are no throwaway tracks on here, all fully deserving their place on this release.
This is a superb release, full of nods to the bands past, but with a new direction. Can’t wait for album number two.
01. DEVIL IN ME
04. BURN THIS HOUSE DOWN
05. I AM REVOLUTION
06. BLAME IT ON ME
07. IN FLAMES (BONUS TRACK DELUXE EDITION)
08. ALREADY DEAD
09. CURSE THE DAY
10. ORANGE GLOW
11. HEAVY CROWN
12. THE SICKNESS
1. DEVIL IN ME (Videoclip)
2. STARMAKER (Videoclip)
3. Making of Heavy Crown
Heavy Crown is due for release 19 February via Frontier Records.
LAST IN LINE – ONLINE