Fireworks

The Winery Dogs - 'Hot Streak' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/33/11/5c/The-Winery-Dogs-Hot-Streak-100-1448914576.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     November 30, 2015    
 
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Once again proving that sometimes a three-piece can produce the most momentous music.

Fans came to the first album from different directions, largely they were followers of Billy Sheehan and Mike Portnoy, both have had fairly high profiles for a number of years, Richie Kotzen has had a more low key profile but the self-titled album launched him into wider recognition. It was largely penned by Kotzen for logistic reasons, but the subsequent touring has allowed them to gel as a band and produce the more cohesive 'Hot Streak'. This second outing is more collaborative but it still has unmistakable Kotzen running through its veins.

'Oblivion' is a hell for leather, duel with the devil opener, the skill of these musicians is head-spinning and nowhere is this more apparent. 'Captain Love' is a head-banging Rocker with a riff Angus Young would be proud of and a scrunchy solo from Sheehan. Title track 'Hot Streak' has a Jazzy heart held together with Portnoy's solid backbeat while Sheehan sprints around the frets chased by Kotzen. 'How Long' is a joyous, spirit lifting "romantic" song.

It is hard to believe that these three have not worked together for years, listen to 'Empire' as they pick up the baton from each other, weaving round one and another, each having their time in the spotlight; this is jamming par excellence. 'Fire' is a smoochy ballad with a gorgeous South American feel. 'Ghost Town', 'The Bridge' and 'War Machine' all tap into many genres and spit them out into a distinctive TWD sound.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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'Spiral' grooves around in circles while Funking it up in the background. 'Devil You Know' Rocks it up and the slower melody distracts from the F1 performance going on in the background. A change of pace brings the Bluesy, slightly Beatle-esque 'Think It Over' and the album signs off with 'The Lamb', another song that grooves along to the conclusion.

If you are fans of the individual TWD, you will love what they bring to 'Hot Streak', but as a fully-fledged band they are so much more. Superficially this is an album of great songs with a wide appeal to lovers of different genres but it's when you peel back the layers you reach the complexity; this is an album you will listen to for years and hear something new every time.

For me what comes across is, while it is self-produced... it is not over produced, the album is not created from in-dropping the best takes, you know that The Winery Dogs can deliver this live (I can vouch for this), once again proving that sometimes a three-piece can produce the most momentous music.

Helen Bradley Owers

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