Label: Century Media
Release date: August 14, 2012
For some bizarre reason Fozzy is a band overlooked. Perhaps it’s the backward belief that WWE wrestling star Chris Jericho cannot also be the blowtorch voice of a quality rock band that rips your face off. Guess again. He is, and he does. The band is set to release its fifth album, and first for new label, Century Media on August 14.
Every band likes to believe, and will often tell you that its newest album is its best. In this case, Jericho has said it, and he’s not embellishing. Sin and Bones is a sonic beast that should shut the trawling yaps of naysayers for good.
Jericho started the band in 1999 with Rich Ward (guitars) and Frank Fontsere (drums) of Stuck Mojo fame. The band’s first two albums were mainly cover material, but the last three have been all original and each one better than the last! Sin and Bones also features new bassist Paul DiLeo who followed Ward over from a brief stint with Adrenaline Mob. Second guitarist, Billy Grey fills out the line-up.
On the band’s 2010 album, Chasing The Grail, Fozzy set the table for what was to come. With Sin and Bone they have thrown down the gauntlet. From the opening track, “Spider In My Mouth”, Jericho and company are off to a blistering start. The eerie intro gives way to a thick guitar riff and Jericho singing about nightmares of the mind. The real surprise comes with the left hook chorus which is ripe with sing-along melody without losing the track’s edge. The song has a very modern feel which reminds a little bit of band’s like Avenged Sevenfold. Which is why this song sequences so well into…
“Sandpaper” is the album’s first single and features a cameo by Avenged Sevenfold vocalist M. Shadows. The song is a fist pumping anthemic monster. This one gets stuck in your cranium like railroad spike that won’t break loose.
Next up is the piledriving juggernaut, “Blood Happens”. This one has a dark insidious feel. Jericho said that he and Ward wrote this side by side without the other knowing what each was working on. Warped minds think alike because Ward’s riffs were perfect for Jericho’s lyrical concept. This is one of several standout tracks on the record.
The band slows it down for the moody, “Inside My Head” before Fontsere goes rapid fire on the drum kit for the title track.
The best part of Sin and Bones is how Fozzy has managed to blend classic hard rock elements with modern metal styles, which they do exquisitely on the seven-minute epic, “A Passed Life”. With something of a brooding balladesque vibe the band roll through this one in a manner that recalls mid-era Metallica. Then in the song’s second half an undercurrent of keys come in with a thick Jon Lord (RIP), Hammond organ feel. The last minute-and-a-half of the song are an incredible collision of both styles.
That Jon Lord organ sound returns on “She’s My Addiction” which kicks off with a bluesy riff, before jumping into a full on rocker that could have come off any Deep Purple album. An addictive chorus (no pun intended), female backing vocals, and a memorable groove. Somehow, DiLeo channeled Roger Glover.
The album ends with another standout track, “Dark Passenger” and the album’s longest number, the mammoth, “Storm the Beaches”.
Sin and Bones is a defining album for Fozzy, and a spot on this summer’s Uproar Tour should help hammer it home for unsuspecting metalheads. The guys in Fozzy grew up with some of the best heavy bands in the world, and now they tour with a new era of giants. Fozzy encompasses what is engaging from both. If you have not heard Fozzy yet, buy Sin and Bones. This is an album to own for any hard rocking metal fan.
Check out our recent interview with Chris Jericho as he talks about the new album.