Fireworks

Furious Zoo - 'Wock N'Woll (Furioso VI)' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/16/e0/c3/furious-zoo-wock-n-woll-furioso-vi-83-1371166446.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     June 13, 2013    
 
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An album that’s well worth checking out.

For a band that was originally intended to be just a side project, Furious Zoo have been around for the best part of a decade now, and are onto – as the bracketed title craftily suggests – album number six. They were formed by Renaud Hantson, the founder member of French rockers Satan Jokers.

Musically, they display a well-crafted mix of European Hard Rock à la Gotthard and Bonfire, interwoven with a distinctly American feel that reeks of Mr. Big and Van Halen, the latter influences clearly courtesy of the stunning incendiary guitar runs of Michael Zurita – a real talent. And there’s a good variation of styles within these parameters, from balls-out rockers such as ‘21st Century Style’, ‘Simple Fact Of Life’ and ‘Jailbreak City’, the groove-laden ‘Fool’, an AC/DC sleaze rocker in ‘Eighteen (Sex Queen)’, more commercial material like ‘Sounding Through The Walls’, the wonderful melodic anthem ‘I Don’t Wanna Lose You’, and heartfelt ballads like ‘Do You Miss Me.’ The title-track itself is a tad on the cheesy side, the lyrics basically consisting of a list of Rock classics from artists like Led Zeppelin, AC/DC and Deep Purple to name but three, but its intention is heartfelt, and is infuriatingly catchy. And though there’s a healthy tongue-in-cheek influence that runs through a good portion of Furious Zoo’s lyrics, the musical delivery is definitely serious, and perfectly executed.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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These guys aren’t afraid to throw a few cover versions into the mix too; there are three of them on this release, perfectly acceptable on an album of fourteen tracks. They have a good stab at Golden Earring’s ‘Going To The Run’ and a rather odd choice is Whitney Houston’s ‘I Have Nothing’, which is actually pretty good, delivered in a Blues-Rock style. But where the album loses marks for me is the inclusion of Nirvana’s ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit.’ Hated it then, hate it now. Fair play, they’ve done something different with it, stripping it back to a serene acoustic style (and sung by bassist Julien Loison) but for me it’s just a case of spraying Febreze onto dog shit. And why a band like this would choose to cover a song by one of the leading figures in virtually destroying this genre of music for a while and banishing it from the mainstream is totally beyond me. At least it’s the last song; giving you plenty of opportunity to hit the ‘Stop’ button after track thirteen…

Also included is a “Live Bootleg Pirate” DVD that includes a healthy chunk of this album. It’s a bit of an oddity: rather than an actual show it’s a series of performance images set to a live audio soundtrack and Renaud Hantson is clearly reading some of his lyrics from an autocue, but it’s worth seeing just for drummer Joe Steinmann’s party-piece of setting his sticks on fire and proceeding to play! A decent bonus to an album that’s well worth checking out.

Ant Heeks

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