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





MAY 22 2015



With a surname as instantly recognisable as Slaughter and all the memories of eighties rock that name brings with it – whether it be Vinnie Vincent’s Invasion, Slaughter the band or even Scrap Metal (the less risqué template for Steel Panther) it must have been tempting to call this project something entirely different, or maybe not… it is after all his real name. Mark Slaughter’s first solo album shows that some eighties rockers have not only aged well but are more than capable of not only holding their own in  the world of modern rock.

Preceded by single and second track here: ‘Never Givin’ Up’ (a portion of proceeds of which went to the Red Circle Foundation) Slaughter’s solo debut like all great records makes you wonder why it all took so long; as in truth it’s one of the best albums we’ve heard this year so far. Starting out with the fired-up eighties rock ride of ‘Away I Go’ we are thrown into and album that encompasses both shadows of the past, nods at modern radio rock and throws in a few pleasing curves balls for good measure. It’s a great way to start.

Three tracks in ‘Miss Elainious’ has an almost Stone Temple Pilots groove to it, but very much a Melodic Rock soul which despite the sonic trappings really shine through, It’s a sign of the quality of the album that such a great song isn’t even one of our highlights here.

Those highlights come, aside from opener and single ‘Never Givin’ Up’ which has a Modern European Melodic Rock feel to it with ‘The Real Thing’ which has an almost Bryan Adams quality. Then there’s the sweeping Melodic duet ‘Don’t Turn Away’ which glides from the speakers and has some wonderful melodies; not forgetting the equally smooth ‘Baby Wants’ which suddenly bursts into life. Aside from those gems there’s nothing that really disappoints here with the gentle melodic ‘Carry Me Back Home’ and the Cheap Trick-like ‘Somewhere isn’t here’ ticking a lot of boxes.

It’s when you hear a song like ‘Velcro Jesus’ though that you start to wonder about the overall approach, as the more balls-out, funk colliding with soaring melodies works beautifully and any of the songs here would sound great given a similar treatment. It’s the same with closer ‘Deep in Her Heart’ which has a real epic feel and similar attitude. Both too have some great guitar work.

And that in a nutshell is the beauty of ‘Reflections in a Rear View Mirror’:  it’s a very fine debut. A great debut that lovers of Melodic Hard Rock should check out now.



by Mark Rockpit