Get Off Your Ass
(EMP Label Group)
As a Gen X 'survivor' of the '70's, '80's and '90's, my already hyper-stimulated senses were often inundated by a staggering variety of Hard Rock and Heavy Metal that is now considered, for lack of a more succinct term, Classic Rock. Force-fed a steady diet of Lynyrd Skynyrd (“Sweet Home Alabama”), Molly Hatchet “(Flirtin' With Disaster”) and Rainbow (“Since You Been Gone”), I found myself searching for a fist-pumping reprieve from the puréed banalities of FM radio. Fortunately, Pasadena, California-born icons Autograph at last offered a noteworthy alternative with their chart-topping hit “Turn Up The Radio”. Faithfully delivered on a semi-regular basis via the oft-adventurous KQDS, the hook-laden anthem was soon firmly entrenched amid my caffeine and nicotine-addled psyche. Now, with the release of the long-overdue comeback Get Off Your Ass, their first full-length recording in twenty-five years, I once again find myself wholeheartedly indulging in the group's lineages.
On the stellar Get Off Your Ass (2017), an expertly assembled song collection of Hard Rock and Heavy Metal, each track, beginning with the maddeningly infectious lament “Every Generation” and the emotionally-charged 'Power Ballad' “All I Own”, immediately command the rapt and undivided attention of all parties involved, myself most definitely included. Attempting to capitalize on the veritable tidal wave of momentum initiated with the well-received release of the Louder EP (2015), the group delivers fires on all cylinders early and often, forever silencing those doubtful of their post-Steve Plunkett abilities. The initial sonic excursions, while not necessarily groundbreaking and certainly far from revolutionary, find the group operating amid a bona fide creative renaissance. Wasting little--if any--time driving home each key focal point, their once MTV caliber modus operandi is in monumentally rare form as they now surge ahead with a renewed sense of self-confidence.
Continuing with the deliciously swaggering gem “Meet Me Halfway” and the relentlessly pummeling socio-political “I Lost My Mind In America”, the newly-rejuvenated combination of vocalist/guitarist Simon Daniels (Flood, ex-Jailhouse, 1RKO) lead guitarist Steve Lynch and drummer Marc Wieland (original drummer Keni Richards tragically passed away in April 2017) steamroll ahead like the well-oiled machine they so obviously have become. Triumphantly returning after a twenty-four year (!) absence, the group wastes little--if any--time re-staking a legitimate claim as a bona fide creative and commercial force not to be ignored. While rather far removed from the trifecta of their RCA Records-fueled heyday (i.e. Sign In Please, That's The Stuff and, to a lesser extent, the painfully underrated swan song Loud And Clear), the newly-rejuvenated quartet deftly delivers the groove-laden audio menageries that once propelled them to the dizzying heights of international recognition.
The group's highly-anticipated debut for EMP Label Group (founded by acclaimed Megadeth bassist David Ellefson), other standouts, including the soaring, testosterone-fueled “Watch It Now” and the equally impressive and nostalgia-inducing battle-cries “Ready To Get Down”, effectively 'deliver' the proverbial 'goods' while treading lightly on the glories of their oft-hallowed past. Distilling the essence of the many decades that were, the group offers a brief yet noteworthy homage to their chart-topping past with a blistering live rendition of the previously-mentioned classic “Turn Up The Radio” performed by the current line-up, the end results effectively further showcase their notoriously razor-sharp compositional abilities. While undeniably both easily accessible and digestible throughout, what ultimately separates the mighty Get Off Your Ass from it's countless would-be contemporaries is a unique, ceaseless dedication to continuously whetting their well-rehearsed multifariousness.
But is it really that good? Absolutely! While quite obviously not for everyone (particularly those without a genuine and sincere appreciation for the 'founding fathers' of Glam and/or Hair Metal), the majority--if not all--of the decidedly tuneful, user-friendly wares contained herein are seemingly guaranteed to leave both die-hard completion and clueless newcomers alike only wanting for more. Even if you somehow still find yourself less than enthralled with the conspicuous absence of original frontman Steve Plunkett, one must, at the very least, sincerely admire the group's ability to succeed amid such an undeniably hostile environment. Thus, if you've once again found yourself in search of an entirely relevant trip down memory lane that doesn't, believe it or not, involve wholeheartedly re-embracing a morbidly obese expanse of Velveeta-clad spandex, then this, my friends, might just be the high-octane auditory balm for whatever it is that ails you. Trust me, you won't be disappointed.
Get Off Your Ass (2017)
Louder (EP) (2016)
The Anthology (2011)
More Missing Pieces (2003)
Missing Pieces (1997)
Loud And Clear (1987)
That's The Stuff (1985)
Sign In Please (1984)
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