Rating: 3 out of 5.
When Great White made it known that Terry Ilous had taken over for Jack Russell, I was definitely curious to see what the band was up to. I am usually a lot more flexible than most with bands when they experiment, or make big changes like this, but Elation did absolutely nothing for me. The music was off, and the singing was really not up what I had hoped. I wasn’t expecting Jack Russell part 2, but had hoped for something stronger, especially from a band that needed to recapture their audience, and sell them on a new lead singer.
When Full Circle was announced, I asked my self “why bother?”, I was so skeptical about the album, that I didn’t even think I was going to check I out. Then I listened to Terry’s interview with Mark Strigl during Talking Metal Episode 676, and hearing him describe some of what transpired with Elation, and now with Full Circle I wanted to give it a shot.
I’m pleased to say that the album is a complete 180 from its predecessor, and it seems as if they have steered this album back in the right direction. Kicking off with I’m Alright, the band establishes what you are about to hear throughout the album, songs crafted in a similar fashion to their old-school releases with Mark Kendall and Michael Larde playing off of each other, almost like a harder version of Keith Richards and Ron Wood. Ilous does not take long to establish himself either, with Elation his performance felt a bit lackluster, but with this album he’s definitely marking his territory, and showing you that he can hang with the band’s former frontman. The next song is called Movin’ On, and reminds me of old Bad Company, this are looking great so far. Moonshine has a real Motown feel to it, with the trumpets, chorus, and bluesy guitar parts. My peeve with this song is that the horns are obviously programmed, and sound a bit thin, other than that, the track is pretty cool. Give It Up sounds like a cross between David Bowie’s Fame, and Kiss’ Little Cesar, the combination actually makes sense when you hear it. Big Time is a bit of a swerve, I remember hearing it for the first time and thinking, oh no, they’re trying to recapture the vibe from Rock Me. Like so many other band before them that get’s that one radio hit, and tries to recapture it with each ensuing album. But low and behold, the track goes more into AC/DC territory, than staying in the vein of the aforementioned hit by the band. The album ends with Never Let You Down which reminds me of the classic track Rose Motel off of Psycho City.
My only knock on the album is the drum sound, I am defiantly not a fan of it. When you have younger rock bands like Royal Blood that have reintroduced huge live drumming to the masses, it makes me wish they would have done something similar with Audie Desbow’s sound on the album, I think it would have really propelled it over the top.
In any event, I give the album three out of five silver space crafts!