De La Cruz - Street Level (Frontiers Records)

Drumstick twirlin' lipstick kissin' hard rockin' fun from Down Under...
Release Date: 
22 Mar 2013 (All day)

Aussie hair metallers De La Cruz have made a SPIRITED stab at bringin’ on the eighties heartache with their album Street Level, and whilst there’s some great balls out fun to be had in the record’s grooves, they ain’t quite got the full stakkheeled strutt in effect just  yet…

Opening up with the THUNDEROUS title track, all the early pointers indicate that we might be on to something special. Heavy like Skid Row’s Slave to the Grind was heavy but with a singalaongagangchorus that’d make a fan of Leatherwolf happy, Street Level gets the pulse rate high and the sleaze levels off the scale – but they just can’t seem to keep the hysteria spirallin’ upwards as the album goes on.

Axeman Casey Jones sure ain’t to blame, at least not whilst he’s SHREDDING like he does on the solo of Invincible or introing like a demon on Worlds Collide; But maybe he’s put more thought into his solos than some of the riffs n’melodies going on here. If you compare De La Cruz to their near relatives like Crazy Lixx or Crashdiet they’re just found a tad wanting in the quality control department at the moment. But it’s early days I guess so watch this space.

Kiwi vocalist Roxy Catalano ain’t entirely freeof blame either. At his best he sings his guts out like a primetime Seb Bach, the helium-filled high notes being a DELIGHT to the ear an’ no mistake… but when he has to take it down a notch he sometimes gets a bit ‘pitchy’ if I might make like a snakeskin trousered version of Randy Jackson... Still, that never did Joe Elliott any harm did it? And the guys attitude is undisputed – check out his great, great performance on the bonehead gonzo anthem S.E.X. – when he’s on the money this guy's the complete package, please believe.

Great in parts then, MASSIVE even, but there’s still a way to go before these guys hit the big league. Still, worth a listen if makeup n’bourbon gets yer motor runnin’…

 Editor's Note: Since LK wrote this review, guitarist Casey Jones has announced he will be leaving DLC...