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Articles Home » 2010 Articles » On-Off - 2010 Ribcrasher
On-Off - 2010 Ribcrasher

ALBUM: Ribcrasher
LABEL: Self Released
YEAR: 2010
SPONSOR: Matteo Vago


LINEUP: Matteo Vago - guitar, vocals * Fabio Lazzarin - bass * Samuele Squaiella - drums * Davide Battistella - guitar

TRACK LISTING: 01 Ribcrasher * 02 Rockin' Blood * 03 It's Hard To Break Me * 04 Nasty Rhythm * 05 Com' On Baby * 06 I'm A Shooter * 07 Seven * 08 I Don't Bite * 09 Steamroller Blues * 10 Let Me Play My Stuff



Out of the Italian north western city of Busto Arsizio, merely a stone's throw both from the now infamous Milan Malpensa airport and Varese, once revered as 'Italy's own little Manchester' due to the impressive flourishing of the textile industry which started taking place there in the late '60s, comes this four men gang led by lead vocalist and guitarist Matteo 'Teo' Vago. To cut a long story short, the road which eventually led to the recording of this, their first studio album, hasn't always been an easy one for On-Off. Formed in 1998 as unpretentious bar band mixing covers with a few originals, after a copious, and often not well paid, number of gigs around northern Italy, in 2001 the band finally became an official AC/DC tribute band, ending up garnering some attention from famed Italian producers such as Paolo Dal Broi (one time producer for Italy's premiere punk rock stalwarts Punkreas) and Giorgio Andreoli (who produced local Italian million seller chanteuse, Anna Oxa). It was only shortly after, and thanks to their continuous live activity, that positive reviews of their live shows in Italian magazines such as Rock Hard, Metal Hammer and Metal Maniac, started coming in. Now, some 9 years down the road, we finally found On-Off ready for their debut..

The Songs
The typical hard-driving, riff-ready, rock'n'roll bar band which bears more than a strong resemblance to the Young brothers' unit (as obviously suggested by their past activity as an official AC/DC tribute band), On-Off aren't just another AC/DC clone band ready to cash on the massive success of the quintessential Aka/Daka derivative combo of the day, Airbourne. In fact, despite lacking some truly innovative material, the four on occasion, can rock out with some admirable conviction, and find in Matteo Vago a singer who, unlike most of Brian Johnson's hopeful (and frankly to the ears of yours truly, totally pathetic) wannabes and soundalikes, does a fine job all the way through, not just yelling into the microphone as a strangled hen, to concentrate instead on some melodic and well balanced singing. On this matter, check for instance the excellent title-track, 'It's Hard To Break Me'(a personal favourite), the rollicking 'Nasty Rhythm', the nocturnal feel of 'I'm A Shooter', or the closing rocker 'Let Me Play My Stuff', moreover all graced by a crystal clear yet really raunchy, and enjoyable, guitar sound.

In Summary
Given the impressive sterility the world of rock'n'roll music currently finds itself in, On-Off have delivered a platter which, if not groundbreaking in terms of originality, is certainly worth a mention here on G-D. I wish the guys from On-Off all the very best for the future, but at the same time, I humbly and sincerely recommend a significant switch towards the development of a more original sound. Nevertheless.. bravi!

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