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
SWEET AND LYNCH ONLY TO RISE REVIEW 2015

 

SWEET AND LYNCH - ONLY TO RISE

FRONTIERS RECORDS

JANUARY 23 2015

 

 

Tracklisting: The Wish; Like A Dying Rose; Love Stays; Time Will Tell; Rescue Me; Me Without You; Recover; Divine; September; Strength In Numbers; Hero-Zero; Only To Rise


What do you get when you put together the talents of George Lynch and Michael Sweet – two names that will be instantly familiar to lovers of 80’s Hard Rock? The answer is ‘Only to Rise’ an album that manages to capture the essence of what made 70’s and 80’s Hard Rock so ear-catching.


The album is to be blunt remarkable – melding the sounds of Lynch and Sweet’s bands Lynch Mob, Dokken and Stryper with more than a touch of Journey, Bad Company and even vintage Van Halen. It sounds like a labour of love and as soon as the needle hits the groove (OK I’m imagining that bit) you know you are onto a winner. The band is completed by bassist James Lomenzo (White Lion and Megadeth) and Brian Tichy (Whitesnake and currently Dead Daisies) so it goes without saying the playing throughout is exemplary.


Starting as a Project floated by Frontier’s President Serafino Perugino it obviously caught Sweet’s attention – as he ended up co-writing everything here with Lynch and even stepping in as Producer. As far as the music goes this one starts off so very strongly – opening track ‘The Wish’ has that high energy burst that pulls you in immediately and drags you along for a wild ride, while ‘Like a Dying Rose’ adds a deep groove that Sweet carries off so well amidst the bluesy swagger. The ballad ‘Love Stays’ takes things down but doesn’t lose that fire or intensity – like Bad Co seen through eighties eyes; before ‘Time Will Tell’ brings back the groove in spades.  


The rest of the album fares almost as well as that opening burst with ‘Rescue Me’ laid upon a huge riff, pounding drums and some great melodic vocals; before the slow calculated build and more reflective nature of ‘Me Without You’ delivers another memorable punch that has you thinking of vintage Dokken with sweeter vocals (maybe pun intended). ‘Recover’ gets back to the groove and ups the pace again; whilst ‘Divine’ explodes with wailing guitar and bluesy vocals and ‘September’ simply smoulders and is as good as anything here.


Closing out the album ‘Strength in Numbers’ starts with an almost Symphonic Metal sizzle before lavishing the melody over the bones; ‘Hero-Zero’ is harder and darker with a dab of psychedelic swirl.  Closer and title track ‘Only To Rise’ is sheer fun – Melodic Metal executed as well as you might expect from the players involved. It’s a fine way to close proceedings.  


With news of a possible tour – we better keep our fingers and toes crossed and hope this collaboration lasts.
At the end of the day this album succeeds because it brings the best out of all concerned. It’s not Stryper, it’s not Dokken or Lynch Mob, but boy is it a quality release for fans of real Hard Rock. Sweet and Lynch have a chemistry that is pure gold and let’s hope it lasts.



SWEET & LYNCH
Michael Sweet – lead vocals, guitars
George Lynch – lead guitars
James Lomenzo – bass guitar
Brian Tichy - drums

 

 

by Mark Rockpit

 

SWEET AND LYNCH - ONLY TO RISE - HARD ROCK ALBUM REVIEW 2015