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Articles Home » 2013 Articles » Black Star Riders - 2013 All Hell Breaks Loose
Black Star Riders - 2013 All Hell Breaks Loose

ARTIST: Black Star Riders
ALBUM: All Hell Breaks Loose
LABEL: Nuclear Blast
SERIAL: 27361 30692
YEAR: 2013


LINEUP: Ricky Warwick - vocals, guitar * Scott Gorham - guitar * Damon Johnson - guitar * Marco Mendoza - bass * Jimmy Degrasso - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 All Hell Breaks Loose * 02 Bound For Glory * 03 Kingdom Of The Lost * 04 Bloodshot * 05 Kissin' The Ground * 06 Hey Judas * 07 Hoodoo Voodoo * 08 Valley Of The Stones * 09 Someday Salvation * 10 Before The War * 11 Blues Ain't So Bad



When the touring version of Thin Lizzy announced plans to record new music last year there was an immediate backlash from those opposed to the idea of any new music being released under the Lizzy name. Recognizing this, the band renamed themselves Black Star Riders, realizing how farcical it would've been to Phil Lynott's memory and the Thin Lizzy legacy. For one I'm glad they decided this, as this album would have no place in the Thin Lizzy pantheon. With the new moniker the band retained only Gorham from Lizzy's classic line-up, with the rest of the band comprised of veteran hired guns, especially drummer DeGrasso who must have played with every hard rock band in existence. To try and capture elements of Thin Lizzy's vintage sound the band used Kevin Shirley as producer, but not even he could save this from being a dull excuse for a hard rock album. There's something about 'All Hell Breaks Loose' that never tickled my fancy from the start and the final product confirms it.

The Songs
Ex The Almighty man Warwick predictably utilizes Lynott's vocal mannerisms right from the go and why he does I'm not sure, seeing this isn't a Thin Lizzy album. It's your basic hard rock anthem, rooted somewhere in 1989 and hardly a great opener. 'Bound For Glory' features Gorham's trademark guitar harmonies at their strongest and the chorus has a certain charm, but it's hard to get over Warwick mimicking Lynott so completely. The rest of the album follows in a similar vein, lots of tired riffs and dreadful blues ridden hard rock that make it hard to review. 'Before The War' has a riff that recalls The Clash's 'London Calling' of all things, with Warwick's imitation really wearing thin. 'Hoodoo Voodoo' is an obvious attempt to revive 70's Lizzy and listening to Warwick attempting some spoken word Lynott at the start of 'Hey Judas' is more than I can really endure. The closing track 'Blues Ain't So Bad' reminds me of some Gary Moore song title, but again the forced lyrics and vocals from Warwick make it seem like nothing more than a second rate cover band. He desperately wants to be a street poet like Lynott and it comes off as phony. 'Kingdom Of The Lost' tries to use some Celtic styled riffs and melody lines, quite amusing for a band comprised of four Americans and sole Irishman Warwick.

In Summary
There's been some glowing adulation for this album, with one reviewer actually praising Warwick for sounding identical to Lynott. To me it's the worst thing about the album. The band changed their name to try and forge their own identity, yet here we have Warwick doing everything he can to be Lynott- which is basically an admission that this is indeed Thin Lizzy. So what's the point? But it's honestly just a stale hard rock album, regardless of the Lizzy legacy. For those curious I'd tread carefully before you bother with this one.

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#1 | gdazegod on June 17 2013 22:50:14
I have this album too and I can't see what all the fuss is about either!
#2 | rkbluez on June 18 2013 01:02:17
Agree with both of you's a decent album but not the killer album some are calling it...I think a little more guitar firepower could of made this one much better...attn: John Sykes.
#3 | Carl Noonan on June 18 2013 01:23:34
I love it personally and really don't care about the Lizzy issue. Just like the songs, playing and sound of it.
#4 | gdazegod on June 18 2013 01:39:20
It's not whether we care about the Lizzy issue, it's just that the band do. A case of personality disorder me thinks.
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