Hollywood Burnouts – Excess All Areas
Label: Rock Road Records
Release Date: July 31, 2012
Germany’s sleaze rock upstarts, Hollywood Burnouts released their debut album in Europe earlier this spring. North American fans will get their taste on July 31. The band was formed in 2008, and the quartet released a 2009 demo, and a 2010 self-titled EP. The line-up consists of vocalist and guitarist Mike Nazzty, guitarist Chrizzy Roxx, bassist Vito Crash, and drummer Nikki Sin. The band’s sound? Exactly what one might expect from a group called Hollywood Burnouts.
Excess All Areas is a paean to the sleaze and glam attitudes and music of the Los Angeles hair metal Sunset Strip era. Take all your favorite 80s Aquanet rockers like Poison, Dokken, Warrant, Ratt, and so on, throw in a touch of fellow Teutonic rockers, the Scorpions, blend it all together and you have the aspirations of Hollywood Burnouts. Sadly, aspiration is all this is. The music, while well-performed matches the band’s name. It is tired, and flames out quickly.
Each track on Excess All Areas is steeped in rehashed guitar licks and trite lyrical clichés. If one took every overused rock and roll expression and threw them in a hat, you’d find the process by which the band pieced their songs together. Don’t misunderstand, there are some decent riffs here, and some palatable songs, but as a whole, it’s a cringe-worthy effort.
Vocalist Nazzty recalls Def Leppard’s Joe Elliott from the band’s debut On Through the Night album. The album Joe wishes he could disown. I personally liked Joe’s voice on that record, so Nazzty’s style initially appealed to me. However, the love was lost on the opening track “Hands of Rock”. The track is meant to be a rousing anthem of hard rocking camaraderie, but the lyrics are so cheesy that the album should come with wine suggestions. In fact, that is true of too many tracks on this record.
You can get a taste of four tracks from the album currently streaming on the band’s website.
The band does offer moments of promise, and one can hope that by their sophomore effort they recognize the difference between homage and mimicry. I have little doubt the talents in the band can surpass this offering if they play from the heart rather than trying to achieve a specific sound and image. If one can get past the retread riffage and poor lyrical content, some value can be found here. However, as a fan of the genre they are attempting to emulate, Excess All Areas sounds like a bad fax copy of a poorly scanned image…to use a clichéd analogy.