Title - 'Shock'
Artist - Tesla
For those not in the know, Tesla is an American rock band formed in Sacramento, California in late 1981 by bassist Brian Wheat and guitarist Frank Hannon as Earthshaker, and later City Kidd.
Lead vocalist Jeff Keith, drummer Troy Luccketta, and guitarist Tommy Skeoch joined them by 1984 and by 1986 the band had changed from its glam-derived sound to a 'rootsier' direction under a new name: "Tesla".
In 1996, the band disbanded, with members devoting themselves to solo projects, but in 2000 they reformed; with Tommy Skeoch departed the band in 2006 and being replaced by Dave Rude.
Having sold over 15 million albums in the United States alone, Tesla (Brian Wheat – Bass / Keyboards / Piano / Backing Vocals; Frank Hannon – Guitars / Backing Vocals; Jeff Keith – Lead Vocals; Troy Luccketta – Drums / Percussion; and Dave Rude – Guitar / Backing Vocals) are back once again with the just-released new studio album, Shock (out via UMe).
Having enjoyed international chart, radio, and tour success for nearly 35 years, their new release (and their 8th studio album to date) is comprised of 12 new tracks and is produced and co-written by Phil Collen (Def Leppard).
1. 'You Won't Take Me Alive'
2. 'Taste Like'
3. 'We Can Rule The World'
5. 'Love Is A Fire'
6. 'California Summer Song'
7. 'Forever Loving You'
8. 'The Mission'
9. 'Tied To The Tracks'
11. 'I Want Everything'
12. 'Comfort Zone.'
Kicking off with the pounding Leppardesque 'You Won't Take Me Alive' it's obvious from the off that the aforementioned involvement of Phil Cohen means that the album is very Def Leppard-affected.
That seeps immediately into the vocals and chorus line of the raucous 'Taste Like' that has Frank Hannon's vocals coming through as if they were being filtered through a Joe Elliott microphone.
The euphoric piano ballad 'We Can Rule The World' is nice and backed by the title track, the foot-tappin' 'Shock' with more Leppardesque vibes pouring through on another power ballad 'Love Is A Fire' and the sunshine bounce of the Kid Rockesque 'California Summer Song.'
Yet another ballad is brought forth on the low key 'Forever Loving You,' which is backed by both the mid-tempo rock of 'The Mission' and then the flashpoint markings of the thunderous 'Tied To The Tracks.'
The musical free for all within 'Afterlife' is next, with the album rounding out with the guitar fest of 'I Want Everything' and then the slap fuzzy bass work of the stand out Leppardesque embodiment, 'Comfort Zone.
In truth, some fans will be put off by this album because it is very overly polished and oozes so much Def Leppardesque moments that it might as well be their new album!
The rockers such as 'You Won't Take Me Alive' and 'Tied To The Tracks' are a wee bit more the old Tesla we know and love' and together with the cool groove of 'Comfort Zone' does manage to pump the adrenaline with us for a band that could have given up a long time ago.
That said, and playing Devil's Advocate here, the hard rocking, creative, sonic, face-crushing Tesla you know and love from the '80s and '90s is definitely MIA here, sorry.
Personally, I cannot comprehend why they needed Phil Collen in the first place because over the years Tesla has written great songs on their own. So allowing Cohen to write and produce these songs with them has the entire album coming across as a Def Leppard wannabe project, sorry.
Not a bad thing overall, but one that might shock (all pun intended) the die hard Tesla fan once the album has begun.
Tesla are actively touring across North America, Europe, and elsewhere around the globe throughout 2019 so be sure to catch them live.
Click here to listen to 'Taste Like'
Amazon Purchase Link
Tesla @ Facebook