Fireworks

Various Artists - 'ZZ Top: A Tribute From Friends' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/ad/51/72/2301_variousartistszztopatributefromfriends_1339690153.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     June 14, 2012    
 
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An impressive guest list and some decent takes on ZZ Top’s classics.

Over the past few years there seems to have been an increasing number of tribute albums cropping up for pretty much every band you could think of; even Cirith Ungol have one! In all honesty the majority tend to be pretty uninspiring affairs filled with inferior versions of the original songs which begs the question, why bother?  ZZ Top have been the subject of such tribute albums in the past so at first glance ZZ Top: A Tribute From Friends seems even more pointless; however on giving the album a spin there is certainly enough to pique your curiosity.

‘Sharp Dressed Man’ sizzles and struts in just the manner you`d expect with Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler at the mike ably backed by Fleetwood Mac’s Mick Fleetwood and John McVie.  Similarly ‘Got Me Under Pressure’ by Duff McKagen’s Loaded stomps along, making it the perfect soundtrack to speeding down the highway in your favourite Hot Rod. Coheed and Cambria also contribute a fine deep, bluesy take on ‘Beer Drinkers and Hell Raisers’ which is a style far removed from their own Prog-infused material that you’d be hard pushed to realise it was in fact them performing this cover. Further contributions worthy of mention come from Wolfmother, Mastodon, Daughtry and there’s a cover of the classic ‘La Grange’ by Country star Jamey Johnson! These all add an interesting take on ZZ Top `s illustrious back catalogue.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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On the downside however is a clunky version of ‘Legs’ by Nickleback which has all of the fun and vigour sucked out of it by an over heavy, sludgy interpretation by the Canadian Rockers.  Likewise, Filter’s take on ‘Gimme All Your Lovin’’ just doesn’t do the song justice. Wyclef Jean from the Fugees and Cheryl Cole’s mentor adds his version of ‘Rough Boy’.  The auto-tune style robotic voice just doesn’t fit the song but at least he is trying to take the original idea and try something different even if it fails to quite work.

All in all, as far as tribute albums go, this is not a bad effort with an impressive guest list and some decent takes on ZZ Top’s classics making this one of the better tribute albums out there.  Whether you’d by-pass your ZZ Top collection in favour of this however, is another matter…

Mick Burgess

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