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Gotthard – The Domino Effect

Label: Nuclear Blast USA
Format: CD
Released: 2007
Reviewed By: Rich Catino

So you ask what happened to hard rockers Bon Jovi ……well I can tell you that Gotthard in the last ten years have rose to the occasion and become the European equivalent (ok maybe not acclaim wise but artistically for sure). Gotthard even have an unplugged album titled "Defrosted".


Take the great radio friendly vocals from Steve Lee with lyrics about every day situations that everyone can relate to, crunchy guitar riffs, stomping drum beats, and big arena rock chorus’ to songs like 'Master of Illusion', 'Gone too Far', the title track and you can see how much the Jersey boys have lost their way (and edge) within their past ten years.

Like most from the melodic hard rock/metal sound, ballads come with the territory and Gotthard do em effortlessly in 'Falling', 'Tomorrows Just Begun' (I like the use of the organ sound and blues based leads) and 'The Call'. Acoustic guitars with passionate guitar leads, pleasant accenting keyboards and vocal lines carry each song and will tug at all the girls hear strings for sure. These three could easily have made it onto MTV’s Top Ten Countdown in the 80’s.

A little harder and more guitar driven than "Lipservice", "Domino Effect" is what hard rock fans like myself want, I know I was more than happy with this disc and it sees regular visits in my cd player. And there is no shortage of great riffs or solid rhythms, just check out 'Heal Me' and 'The Cruiser' as the hook grabs right onto your cheek. 'Come Again' even features some talk box guitar work ala Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi guitarist if you already didn’t know).

Four bonus tracks include the excellent single 'Anytime Anywhere' from their last album "Lipservice" with a version sung in Spanish.

"Domino Effect" is easily one of their all around best if you ask me, offering some of their strongest songwriting to date.

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