Fireworks

Tesla - 'Shock' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/e8/f3/ba/tesla-shock-65-1558643543.jpg Hot

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This is another quality album from the eighties big guns.

2019 sees the return of Sacramento stalwarts Tesla with their eighth studio release 'Shock', the legendary rocker's first new music since 2014's 'Simplicity'. One of Rock's more stable outfits, the only change to the group's line-up is Dave Rude replacing original guitarist Tommy Skeoch. The remaining players are the unique sounding Jeff Keith (vocals) and Frank Hannon (guitar) alongside the powerful rhythm section of Brian Wheat (bass) and Troy Lucketta (drums). Tesla have once again used their connections to enlist and utilised the services of Phil Collen from long-time sparring partners Def Leppard as co-writer and producer.

Opener 'You Won't Take Me Alive' blasts straight in with the signature Hannon sound (which is laden with effects) and an edgy beat that'll have you tapping along throughout. Keith's voice is in fine form with his trademark squawk giving the track a deeper dimension. 'Taste Like' contains a slight homage to mid-eighties Leppard with a crisp, clean sound and it's a great rocker, while 'We Can Rule The World' slows proceedings and in places feels like a song that's been snatched from Queen (in a good way). It features some wonderful work from Hannon and builds up towards a wonderful crescendo ending.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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The title track has a more modern feel and it's one of the album's heaviest sounding tunes with a deep-seated beat running through which melts into the peaks around the chorus. Another slow-burning number is the wonderful 'California Summer Song' with its sixties throwback style and a happy beat that enthuses from the start; it's one of the standout tracks and feels very much like a memory from growing up. The music flows throughout the record as it switches from head-on rockers to slow ballads like 'Forever Loving You'. What Tesla has served up are twelve songs of the highest quality that snatch sounds from right across their illustrious career.

'Shock' carries a large chunk of the classic Tesla sound yet remains contemporary and original; there's obviously a small flavouring of Def Leppard, but that's understandable when you consider Collen's involvement. As you would also expect, the production is of the highest quality as is the musicianship – for a band approaching thirty-five years together it's quite an achievement to still sound so fresh.

This release shows Tesla still have a lot to offer the Rock world, but that wasn't a shock to me. This is another quality album from the eighties big guns.

Mick Parry

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