Album Review: Black Star Riders Heavy Fire

Rock Supergroup Still Have Fire in Their Bellies

When this supergroup formed in December 2012, some expected them to release one record and promptly head off into the sunset. How wrong can you be? Founded from the current incarnation of Thin Lizzy and featuring an impeccable line-up of rock journeymen who have played in the likes of Suicidal Tendencies, Megadeth, Alice Cooper and Ratt, the Scott Gorham and Ricky Warwick-led act have confounded critics and gradually grown out of the sizeable shadow of Lizzy mainman, Philip Lynott. Heavy Fire is BSR’s third record and it’s full of firsts – including the utilisation of keyboards and songwriting input from bassist Robbie Crane.

Black Star Riders have also injected a little bit of soul into the mix, with female backing vocals peppering some of the songs, adding sugar to the spice – check ‘When The Night Comes In’ and ‘Ticket To Rise’. ‘Testify Or Say Goodbye,’ which features singer Pearl Aday (daughter of Meat Loaf), really pushes their classic rock sound forward while paying tribute to their past: the lyrics are full of old-school Irish wisdom, calling to mind Lynott’s romantic side. ‘Who Rides The Tiger’ on the other-hand, takes a leaf out of frontman Ricky Warwick’s previous band The Almighty’s book: it’s a ferocious number, crammed with choppy guitars and muscular beats. All told, there’s still plenty of incendiary moments on Heavy Fire to please the faithful.

 

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