Rat Pak Records
For my money, George Lynch has never had a more fruitful musical counterpart than Oni Logan. Logan’s rich, full-throated bellow has, from the outset, seemed tailor-made to compliment the strong, earthy tones of Lynch’s acrobatic yet understated guitar heroics. ‘The Brotherhood,’ the latest release from their newly-configured LYNCH MOB, more than fulfills the promise of their two post-reunion endeavors, ‘Sun Red Sun’ (2014) and ‘Rebels’ (2015); it’s a rip-snorting chunk of Hard Rock groove and one hell of a fun listen that easily stands alongside their 1990 debut, the underappreciated late-era Glam Metal gem ‘Wicked Sensation.’
Lead off track “Main Offender” kicks in with a nasty, biting riff before giving way to a bridge that chordally resembles late-80’s Queensryche and a chorus that positively drips with attitude. The Heavy Metal stomp continues with tracks like “Black Heart Days” and “Until the Sky Comes Down,” while the tones and riffs on “Mr. Jekyll and Hyde” and “Where We Started” take on a slightly warped tinge of psychedelia. The influence of Led Zeppelin can be felt both in the rock-steady strut of “Dog Town Mystics,” and in the sweeping, swooping, swirling strings of the acoustic “The Forgotten Maiden’s Pearl.” And fans of the band’s earliest work will find plenty to love in the full-on Pop Metal of “I’ll Take Miami” (which, in the best way possible, recalls the very finest moments of Sammy Hagar-era Van Halen) and “Last Call Lady” (a song that simultaneously reminded me of Jackyl and the band’s own “River of Love”).
Despite being a band ostensibly built around a full-on bonafide Guitar God, George Lynch finds a sweet spot in the mix on ‘The Brotherhood’ that serves to neither dominate nor irritate; to be sure, there is fretwork wizardry a-plenty going on, but it’s refreshing when folks with full-shred capabilities also know how to exercise restraint in service of the song. Oni Logan is in fine voice throughout; always one of the genre’s most singular voices, he shines here, particularly in the Ozzy-style double-tracked vocals of “Black Mountain” and the Blues murk of “Until I Get My Gold.” What really serves to separate ‘The Brotherhood’ from its predecessors, though, is the rhythm section: the interplay between longtime scene stalwarts bassist Sean McNabb (Quiet Riot, Great White) and drummer Jimmy D’Anda (BulletBoys) gives these songs a swagger and a swing that goes beyond the standard thump and bash.
With ‘The Brotherhood,’ LYNCH MOB has managed to succeed where so many of their contemporaries have failed. It’s a record that’s true to its roots but refuses to pander to the past or offer listeners an ersatz nostalgia trip. Punchy and melodic, but still sharp and heavy, it’s a solid slab that will reward not only longtime listeners but anyone looking for a Hard Rock kick in the pants.