Current guitarist for The Rods and former Elf axe man David Rock Feinstein gives us his second solo blast of heavy metal with the release of Bitten by the Beast. Filled with glorious guitar laden anthems that bring back the days of arena rock, David becomes the teacher of old school metal to a new generation.
Not sticking to one style on this album, Feinstein explores areas like the hard edged Motorhead, Judas Priest type chugging metal in "Smoke On The Horizon" or the terrific "Break Down The Walls". Churning guitar work with tasty solos combine with David's snarling vocals to remind us how much fun this type of music is. Fist-a-pumping with chorus' that are destined to be massive sing-a-longs, this is vintage metal that is a treat for those that remember the first time this kind of sound enticed them.
He also gives you a dose of blues based boogie with the aptly titled "Rock's Boogie". It has a kind of a Molly Hatchet feel that displays Rock's guitar talent with dynamite results. Rock also gives you another old school bluesy lesson with a song that originally appeared on the first Elf album "Gambler Gambler". This one reminds me of Blackfoot in their heyday.
The focal point of this disc is going to be and rightly so the song "Metal Will Never Die". Enlisting his cousin and former Elf vocalist to sing, I doubt that David knew at the time that this would be one of the last recordings of the late great Ronnie James Dio. Ronnie brings a power and energy to this song that sounds like something that could be found on one of his discs. The epic metal anthem is by far the most dynamic work on the disc and it is in no small measure because of Ronnie. Feinstein wrote a masterful ode to all things metal and was lucky enough to have the ultimate vocalist to sing it. We will sorely miss Mr. Dio and this song is ample reason why. Raise the horns high one more time as we all know Ronnie would want it that way.
Ronnie also causes one of the biggest let downs of this disc too. "Kill The Demon" is another Dio like bit of epic power metal that David wrote about the disease residing inside Ronnie. It is a very cool song and powerful in its own right but suffers from having to follow the Ronnie sung tune. I would have placed it before "Metal Will Never Die" as it gets the…how do I follow that treatment. While Feinstein's vocals are fine, they are no comparison to his cousin but then who is.
For those that like their hard rock loud and proud, this is an album that will find its way into your player often. Running the gambit from epic power metal to even a little bit of the glam sound of the West Coast, Feinstein gives you a very good synopsis of the 80's sound that permeated the airwaves back then and reminds us that good music is never out of style.
1. Smoke On The Horizon
2. Evil In Me
3. Break Down The Walls
4. Metal Will Never Die
5. Kill The Demon
6. Rock's Boogie
7. Give Me Mercy
8. Run For Your Life
9. Gambler Gambler