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Sideburn - 'Jail' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/55/69/09/1160_SideburnJail_1301861345.jpg Hot

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Nostalgia still rules.

Rising phoenix like from the ashes of Swiss metaller’s Genocide (a band who those with long memories may remember released a couple of minor league metal albums during their decade long tenure from the mid 80’s to the mid 90’s), Sideburn have been active participants on the European live circuit more or less continually since debut ‘Sell Your Soul For Rock ‘N’ Roll’ first emerged during 2007.

At home they’ve pretty much established themselves as a veritable hard rockin’ institution; a plethora of shows with the likes of Kiss, Def Leppard and Motorhead (amongst others) met with growing enthusiasm by a steadily growing legion of fans ... further afield however they’re still a closely guarded secret yet to gain wider public exposure. Not unlike early 80’s Krokus in some respects, their sound combines the assured boogie swagger of prime time AC/DC with a cross section of bluesy hard rock (Great White) and southern rock influences (Lynyrd Skynyrd).

Follow up to 2008’s ‘Cherry Red’ opus, ‘Jail’ is the fifth full length studio set to bear the Sideburn name (their first for Metal Heaven), although initially I suspect it will be the fact that Beau Hill was sat in the producers chair that will raise most interest. If you’re looking for something new or innovative, chances are you won’t find it in Sideburn; but if instead you’re looking for a sweat soaked, foot stomping good time then ‘Jail’ could certainly have plenty to offer.

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Eschewing any fancy gimmicks or studio skulduggery – even their image reminds me of a bunch of roadies waiting for the band to finish so they can clear the stage – Sideburn simply turn up, plug in and let their music do all the talking. Low slung guitars, hypnotic tribal rhythms and gravel edged vocals are their one and only raison d’être, and whilst we’ve heard it all before as I implied earlier, there’s something about this lot that grabs your attention.

From the Great White flavoured ‘The Red Knight’ to the anthemic ‘Live To Rock’, Sideburn deliver slab after slab of good old fashioned boogie which after even just one run through had me grinning from ear to ear like an idiot ... what’s more, I bet they’re awesome live!

Fads may come and go, but on the strength of this it’s easy to see why nostalgia still rules.

Dave Cockett

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