After many years, the great band, Riverdogs, have reunited to release their 5th overall record entitled, California (Frontiers Music). This reunion features all of the original members; Rob Lamothe (vocals, guitars), Nick Brophy (bass, vocals) and Vivian Campbell (lead guitar), along with drummer Marc Danzeisen and showcases excellent songwriting, soulful vocals, solid rhythms and searing guitars. Fans of Riverdogs fanciful 1990 self titled debut will find California a welcomed step back to their roots as a band.
California is an 11 track record that finds a common thread of the sunny state of California running throughout. The commercially viable lead track, "American Dream", starts thing off with an upbeat and catchy number and "The Revolution Starts Tonight" keeps things rolling along a twinge more muscularity. But things get stepped up a notch with the glorious, "Something Inside". We are reminded of the golden, soulfully throated Rob Lamothe and his awe-inspiring vocals. This track conjures up a smokey, night club with its breathy and earthy vibe. It has been some 27 years since the Riverdogs debut album and Lamothe sounds as brilliant and smooth as he did in 1990. "Something Inside" is one of Lamothe's finest moments on California and his vocals are goose-bump inducing.
Vivian Campbell fans will be quite happy to hear Viv getting back to what put him on the guitar map to begin with, playing with some fire again and delivering some silky guitar leads. Just when you thought Def Leppard had killed him from playing the guitar, Viv follows up the great Heavy Crown record by his other side band, Last In Line, with this Riverdogs record that is filled with even more guitar than the Last In Line record. Viv delivers great guitar fills all over the place on California and offers up some fantastic and tasty guitar lead work on the aforementioned stand out track, "Something Inside" and on the almost moody and tranquil, "Ten Thousands Reasons" Viv rips a twisty and emotional filled guitar solo that is stand out. "Catalina" is another rocker that finds both Lamothe's passionate vocals and Campbell's riffing and guitar work at a feverish level.
Riverdogs have managed to capture the vibe and feel of their 1990 debut on their 2017 return with California and that is not an easy task. Lamothe's scotch filled vocals sound as perfect and literally the same as they did in 1990, their songs have been masterfully crafted with a solid rhythmic foundation and then on top of all of that we get to welcome back Guitar Hero, Vivian Campbell to fiery guitar solo world again. California is a mature record that shows 27 years of growth, while still sounding like the youthful band that was formed back in 1989. California is just a great, seasoned, well executed Rock record injected for 2017.
See more about this release on our recent YouTube show!
Nick Brophy: Bass, keys, vocals
Vivian Campbell: Guitars, vocals
Marc Danzeisen: Drums, vocals
Rob Lamothe: Vocals, guitar
1. American Dream
2. The Revolution Starts Tonight
3. Something Inside
4. Golden Glow
5. You're Too Rock And Roll
6. The Heart Is A Mindless Bird
7. Searching For A Signal
8. Welcome To The New Disaster
9. Ten Thousand Reasons
11. I Don't Know Anything
Added: August 26th 2017
Reviewer: Butch Jones
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
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Posted by Pete Pardo, SoT Staff Writer on 2017-08-26 07:33:58
Has it really been 27 years since that excellent debut album from Riverdogs? Apparently, that is indeed the case, but the band have turned back the calendar for their reunion release for Frontiers Records, California. Packed to the gills with plenty of soaring vocal hooks, sizzling Vivian Campbell guitar work, and that Riverdogs swagger that took the world by storm back in 1990 but then disappeared, California will be a welcome return for many hard rock fans. Riff heavy tunes like "American Dream", "The Revolution Starts Tonight", the bluesy "Something Inside", and the crunchy "Searching for a Signal" all show the band in fine form, Vivian delivering an endless assault of tasty lead guitar, melodic fills, and fiery riffs, while vocalist Rob Lamothe sounds just as good as he did on the debut. Just check out his silky delivery on the hook laden "Ten Thousand Reasons"...great stuff.
Plenty of hard rockers, a few catchy ballads, all of it classy, memorable, and enjoyable, Riverdogs have cranked out what is no doubt going to be one of 2017's most successful comebacks.
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