Friday, April 29, 2011

DUFF MCKAGAN'S LOADED -CD- THE TAKING

Duff McKagan is still hard to discuss or see without thinking Gun 'N' Roses although it has been many moons since his last days in the world of Axl. Forever linked to that historic chapter in rock Duff is also a member of Velvet Revolver. However Duff has his own band too. Duff McKagan's Loaded and their latest release, "The Taking" can stand up on its own.

"The Taking" is twelve hard rocking tunes that as a collective work separates itself from Duff's previous work in GNR and VR. It is not similar in sound to those bands nor am I claiming it is better. What I am saying is that there is now another band that Duff McKagan will be remembered for.

"The Taking" was produced by Terry Date who has worked with countless artists including Metal Church, Soundgarden, Pantera, Dream Theater, Ozzy and White Zombie to name just a few. Terry's wide range of work definitely helped mold this album which is a combination of hard rock, metal and punk. Sometimes all at once.

"Lords Of Abaddon" kicks things off with hard rock sound and punk rock vocals. Definitely a great lead off track as it is a killer song and makes you want to keep the disc playing. If that song doesn't grab you completely " Executioner's Song" will finish the job and in my opinion the most rocking tune on the whole disc. "Dead Skin" takes us back down punk rock road while "We Win" is an anthem reminiscent of the arena rock bands of the 80s.

This album is loaded with sing along choruses, some great guitar riffs and very strong vocals by Mr. McKagan. This of course lends itself to the question on why he keeps winding up in bands with temperamental singers when he is a pretty good one in his own right. An interesting note here is that Duff does not play bass on this CD, he plays rhythm guitar and is lead vocalist on all tracks.

"Cocaine" seems to be getting a lot of buzz as the song on this Cd that reminds everyone of Guns 'N' Roses. I can't help but imagine that it is more from trying to make a comparison to Duff's past then it actually being so. "Cocaine" is probably the most radio friendly song on here but I don't expect to hear a lot of Loaded on radio outside of the Boneyard (SiriusXM) and Eddie Trunk's Friday Night Rocks. That's unfortunate because this album is loaded with great music.

Another track, "Your Name" will have you banging your head while "We Win" is another tap your feet along track which was also used by MLB this past October during its coverage of the World Series. You get a strong effort from Duff and his band here and with it's high energy in your face style you won't be disappointed when you pick it up.

"The Taking" was released on April 19.

FULL TRACK LISTING:

01. Lords Of Abbadon
02. Executioners Song
03. Dead Skin
04. We Win
05. Easier Lying
06. She’s An Anchor
07. Indian Summer
08. Wrecking Ball
09. King Of The World
10. Cocaine
11. Your Name
12. Follow Me To Hell
*Some versions also have an alternate acoustic version of "Cocaine"

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