The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world






With songs about Michael Jackson (well at least his jacket) and Elvis (well pictures of him) and no songs with the word ROCK in the title Saving Abel is guilty of avoiding clichés on this their third long-player.


Single ‘Bringing Down the Giant’ which addresses the hot topic of bullying has a lot of flavour to it and is obviously built for airplay. It’s a nice enough song and has a real Black Stone Cherry feel to; so if you are a fan of BSC as I am, that’s not a bad thing, but as I’ve been following Saving Abel since their first release: as I press play I just hope that they’ve still got what made them such a great band in the first place rather than replicating what it proving to be a successful formula for others.


‘Michael Jackson’s Jacket’ is funky and fun, if a little throwaway, but I do not like what follows - ‘Amazing’ sounds only a few small steps away from boy-band territory, someone is trying too hard, or maybe being pushed too hard?
‘Pine Mountain’ acts merely as a Bluegrass tinged introduction to the down-home sing-along of ‘You Make Me Sick’ which turns into a great workout and really raises the first big smile. Which way from here?


‘Pictures of Elvis’ is the ballad that does work, it might be a little Matchbox Twenty for some, but I’ll buy it… and from hereon in it works to varying degrees.


‘New Loser’ I like, it’s got a great hook.  


‘Me and You’: another lighter one, is probably my highlight here, but it’s really pop-rock territory and miles away from the songs that first excited me about the band: ‘New Tattoo’ and ‘Addicted’ (from their self-titled debut) it’s almost as if the sound of the band is being slowly mellowed over time and whilst that may work for fine Bourbon I’m not entirely sure it works for me.


Elsewhere the country-blues-pop of ‘I’d Do It Again’ is another great song. ‘Bittersweet’ another inoffensive aim at radio that will please some (the guys certainly know how to write a hook); whilst no grass grows under the feet of ‘Those Who Wait’: yet another slow one.


There really is nothing bad here I guess I’m just bemoaning the lack of harder edged numbers? Lets face it you might listen to this and think the guys are guilty of no more than writing a great album of radio-friendly pop rock and you’d be entirely correct.


I shall not be taking my Saving Abel signed drum-head off the wall just yet, but I am eyeing it a little more suspiciously… maybe it’s a grower of an album?


The law of diminishing (rock) returns? Or the new Matchbox 20?



by Mark Diggins