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Chickenfoot: Chickenfoot III

Sammy Hagar, Michael Anthony, Joe Satriani, and Chad Smith, collectively known as Chickenfoot, are back with the follow-up to their self-titled release, curiously titled Chickenfoot III. Get ready for another dose of classy, fun, melodic hard rock from this supergroup, as this sophomore outing sees the band even more at home and comfortable with each other, making III perhaps even more cohesive than the debut.

Hagar and Satriani really shine on the rousing opener "Last Temptation", a bruising heavy rocker filled with plenty of meaty riffs and Sammy's aggressive roar & swagger. "Alright, Alright" is your 'radio friendly' number, perfect for those that love Hagar's time with Van Halen or his solo work, as is "Different Devil", a real rootsy number with some lush acoustic & electric guitars, crisp rhythms, and super catchy lead & backing vocals from Hagar and Anthony. "Up Next" is 'next', a driving hard rocker with some mean riffs from Satriani as Smith & Anthony dig deep with a monstrous groove. On this raunchy number, Hagar shows that he still has plenty left in the vocal tank, and Satch lays down some wild lead guitar work, yanking that whammy bar as if his life is depending on it. "Lighten Up" is another crunchy rocker with just a touch of beer soaked blues feel, and "Come Closer" is a melodic, almost poignant number with a great Hagar vocal and effective guitar layers from Satriani, especially in the middle section. The band tells a tale of the working man down on his luck on the blue collar rocker "Three and a Half Letters" (Satch scorches on this one!), and the bottom heavy stomp of "Big Foot" harnesses both classic Montrose and Van Halen. The CD closes with the crushing blues rock of "Dubai Blues" and the eerie tribute to the delta blues & classic Southern Rock with "Something Going Wrong". The last one is a real effective piece, and ends things here on a somber yet highly enjoyable tone, proving that Chickenfoot have the ability to mix up styles quite well.

It's too bad that Chickenfoot III is being released this late in the season, as it would have been a great summertime CD to crank up in June, July, and August, but better late than never I always say. Whether this one tops their debut is up for you to decide, but I think they have by a small margin. Along with Black Country Communion's sophomore release this year, Chickenfoot have churned out a real winner, proving that there is life to the 'supergroup' after all.

Track Listing
1. "Last Temptation" 4:02
2. "Alright, Alright" 4:39
3. "Different Devil" 4:24
4. "Up Next" 4:33
5. "Lighten Up" 5:12
6. "Come Closer" 4:08
7. "Three and a Half Letters" 4:07
8. "Big Foot" 3:49
9. "Dubai Blues" 5:02
10. "Something Gone Wrong" 5:16

Added: October 27th 2011
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 3391
Language: english

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Chickenfoot: Chickenfoot III
Posted by Steven Reid, SoT Staff Writer on 2015-10-17 11:19:48
My Score:

After their stunning 2009 self titled debut effort dispelled the myth that all "super-groups" are over rated and under achieving, the quartet of Sammy Hagar, Joe Satriani, Michael Anthony and Chad Smith return to prove it was no fluke. Undoubtedly the most exciting thing to happen to grooving, hard hitting, blues infused and catchy as hell rock music in a seriously long length of time, Chickenfoot not only made a big noise on their arrival, they absolutely deafened us with performances and songs that hit the spot time and again and yes "III" takes that a good few steps further.

If there was a criticism of "Chickenfoot" (and there wasn't really, I'm just looking for one now), then it was possibly that it was just ever so slightly too jam based in its construction. However it was something that wasn't too apparent until.... well until "III" hit the stereo. The intense, thick grooves are simply irresistible, making for an album that never dips in quality from start to finish, which is not something I can say very often these days. Satriani is peerless, firing out huge chunky riffs, which Anthony and Smith absolutely smack home. Neither the bassist nor the drummer feel the need to play the "look at me game", instead Chad lays down beats that make you want to move while Anthony's bass locks the mighty guitar wallops into the groove. The four string legend again illustrates just how under rated his vocal prowess is, handling all of the backing vox on this release, with his glorious voice adding to the impactful and memorable nature of these songs. Hagar as ever proves to be a supremely enigmatic frontman, totally comfortable jostling for space between the howls, swooshes and guitar riffs which Satriani makes sound so natural, leading from the front in a captivating and engaging manner.

As with the debut album, the highest compliment I can pay Chickenfoot is that all four individual members of this band shine throughout, but it is all done in a way that ensure the song is always king. Satriani still packs a punch and fires out licks and tricks that most guitarists can only dream of, while Anthony confirms his status as a lynchpin in the band who unceremoniously dumped him from their line up (a mistake that is going to come home to roost). Smith on the other hand relishes the opportunity to really open out his playing, adding more thump and intensity than his day job allows, while Hagar belies his years to sound fresh and vital in a way few rock singers will ever match.

In an album of ten cracking tracks, three are worthy of extra-special mention. First up is the thump and grind of "Big Foot", which is the grooviest piece of hard rock you'll hear all year (and then some). "Something Going Wrong" proves this is a band capable of mixing it up with a slower more mellow approach losing none of the impact the rest of the album has, while the lyrically and musically captivating "Three And A Half Letters" shows a completely different side of the band. Yes Satch still fires out a guitar motif you can't resist and the rhythms are hammered home, however it is the words taken from three (and a half) letters which Hagar was sent from fans of his who have hit hard times which really have you hooked. It is an unusual idea and Hagar delivers the vocals in spoken voice until he hits home with the chorus line of "I Need A Job" over and over. It is a brave decision from a band of multi-millionaires to highlight the plight of those who find themselves down on their luck. However the whole thing has a heart and passion that leaves you moved and angry at where the world is although the lyrical pick me up comes in the shape of the other nine tracks on show.

Believe the hype. Chickenfoot are the real deal and the hottest band out there right now - and by some distance.

Chickenfoot: Chickenfoot III
Posted by Dean Pedley, SoT Staff Writer on 2011-10-27 01:28:01
My Score:

The past couple of years have seen the return of the genuine Supergroup with both Chickenfoot and Black Country Communion offering high quality releases and stunning live performances. The winning combination of Sammy Hagar, Joe Satriani, Chad Smith and Michael Anthony (together with producer Mike Fraser) has proven the debut was not merely a one-off collaboration with the cunningly titled Chickenfoot III. The album has been available for a few weeks both as part of a magazine package and in other territories but in the UK the stand-alone physical version has just been issued in three deluxe formats (CD, CD/DVD and Vinyl) that all include some imaginative 3D packaging that brings the artwork to life.

Where III really improves on the debut is with the greater injection of melody and memorable hooks, making this seem less like a bunch of guys jamming and more a collection of well-crafted songs that offers up a variety of tempo and style. Highlights include the insistent groove of "Different Devil" and the laid back smoking blues that is "Something Gone Wrong" where Satriani resists the temptation to over-indulge and keeps it simple yet effective. He may have just turned 64 but Hagar still sounds as good as ever, belting out the refrain of "I Need a Job" on the emotionally charged "Three and a Half Letters" and delivering smooth harmonies with Anthony on "Dubai Blues". Overall Anthony makes much more of an impact on this album and it is refreshing to hear both his bass and vocals throughout. With Smith now focused on RHCP and drummer Kenny Aranoff deputising for the live shows it remains to be seen what the future holds for Chickenfoot but with III they have eclipsed the acclaimed debut album and upped their game here's hoping Chickenfoot V will be on the agenda before too long.

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