JACKYL – ‘ROWYCO’ ALBUM REVIEW

JACKYL
‘ROWYCO’
(Mighty Loud Records)

These guys blasted onto the scene in the early ‘90s with a couple of big albums with Brian Johnson of AC/DC even making the odd cameo appearance. However, they have never been on my radar so this is the first time I have actually heard them. Entitled ROWYCO,’ the press release challenges you to work out what it stands – apparently the band has quite a sense of humor!

“Disasterpiece” opens the proceedings and I do like the play on words. The song is a little reminiscent of Black Stone Cherry and is a reasonable opener. Next up is “Rally” which opens with the chorus which I don’t really get with its ‘ugga-chugga, ugga-chugga’ backing vocals. Maybe I just don’t get the guys sense of humor and overall the song just goes over my head. This is quickly followed by the funk of “All Night Rodeo” which I do like. However it just doesn’t seem to fit with the two preceding tracks. Next up is the rocker “Ahead of My Time,” which has a great guitar riff but is let down by a weak chorus in my opinion. We are then treated to some bluesy southern-style rock in the shape of “Just Because I’m Drunk” – also has a great hook line which is also hilarious – just because I’m drunk don’t mean you’re right!

The album shoots off in a truly bizarre direction with a truly awful version of Hot Chocolate’s “Everyone’s a Winner.” Really just doesn’t work and is a very poor second to the GUN version released recently! Obviously they have never heard of GUN (or have they?) and I am sure GUN will never have heard of them either. “Crazy” is based around a big guitar chop which is good but a little clichéd. However, I do especially like the vocal performance. This is followed by “Hammer to the Head,” is a slower rocker which is good but a little clichéd once again. A stomping rocker entitled “Limpdick” follows which does very little for me if I am honest. Last song off the album is “Blast Off” which as the title suggests a pacey riffing rocker. With a chorus with the line “This is rock’n’roll …” I probably don’t have to describe this number in any great depth as it is really as clichéd as it sounds.

These guys are well experienced and seasoned musicians with decades of experience behind them. This is obvious from how well the songs are executed and the engineering/production. However, what is disappointing is the quality of material on offer. To these ears it is an eclectic bunch of songs that sit uneasily together as an album and don’t really grab me at all. Suffice to say, I won’t be digging into their back catalogue!

– Peter Scallen

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