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
Hardline Human Nature Review
HARDLINE
HUMAN NATURE

FRONTIERS MUSIC srl
Release Date: October 14th 2016

Hardline

"Hardline evolved from being a sunset strip sensation featuring brothers Johnny (vocals) and Joey (guitar) Gioeli to a supergroup of sorts featuring former Bad English members Neal Schon and Deen Castronovo, before finally becoming a band showcasing the incredible talents of the fabulous singer Johnny Gioeli with the production and songwriting skills of Alessandro Del Vecchio (Rated X, Resurrection Kings, Revolution Saints), the shredding talents of guitarist Josh Ramos (The Storm), and the powerful rhythm section made up of bassist Anna Portalupi (Tarja) and drummer Francesco Jovino (Primal Fear, Jorn). All these musicians have an impressive pedigree, but what makes Hardline special is how well their unique and different talents blend together."
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It's not often you find yourself nodding at the press release about the new release by a classic band of their latest album and thinking they've nailed it. This time however Hardline's new album 'Human Nature' does live up to that hype and most certainly is their best releases since 1992's classic 'Double Eclipse' (an album that's always been in my Top 10).

What you get here on Human Nature is a group of musician's who have managed to rediscover that sound that made that first album so immediate and so powerful, but not only that, they have somehow managed to up the intensity, crystalise the slower numbers into real gems and keep the momentum going right to the very end.

For those that like it heavy and to also get that nagging 'Will it be any good?' question out of the way then opener 'WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE' is a great hard rocker that both sets the pace and the quality standard. Gioeli is in supreme form too, and provides a soaring vocal to stir up the listener. It's when the next track 'NOBODY'S FOOL' lands though that you start to think this will be something rather more than another good album-and when that chorus hits you just know you're right!

Offering a little change in pace the title track is the first of the slower numbers on the album - and to be honest those slow ones work really well here, and oddly for me it's the other big ballad 'TAKE YOU HOME' that is still my favourite track after repeated listens. It could well be the biggest rock ballad I've heard in the last ten years, it's that good!

Oddly too there's a Blues tune (Hardline and Blues? Really?!) - the appropriately-titled 'TRAPPED IN MUDDY WATERS' - real classy vintage Hard Rock with a touch of Blues, which Johnny nailed in the studio first take, and despite his reservations singing the Blues he sounds a natural! (CHECK OUT OUR INTERVIEW WITH JOHNNY FOR HIS TAKE ON THE ALBUM).

I think the song that really reminded me of 'DOUBLE ECLIPSE' though was 'RUNNING ON EMPTY'! A great song where the guitar just echos the sound of Schon on that debut magnificently. Josh Ramos offers some fine leads throughout and vocals aside, his guitar work is the real star of the album for me.

The album closes with 'FIGHTING THE BATTLE' - a huge melodic song to close that makes you wonder how on earth they can top this! For those in Europe and the U.S. expect to see Hardline live soon! This is the Hardline album fans had been longing for.


TRACKLIST
Where Will We Go from Here
Nobody's Fool
Human Nature
Trapped in Muddy Waters
Running on Empty
The World Is Falling Down
Take You Home
Where the North Wind Blows
In the Dead of the Night
United We Stand
Fighting the Battle

Official Kaato website


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Review by Mark Rockpit