Those Bastard boys have had a busy summer. Gigs supporting Guns N Roses in Europe, countless festivals including Hellfest, Wacken Open Air, Graspop Metal Meeting to name but a few. It’s been amazing seeing the constant and well-deserved upward trajectory of the band. They really know how to keep their rabid fan base happy and are one of the hardest working bands out there.
September 2023 sees the release of their third studio album – ‘Kings of the Asylum’. The album is the first studio release with frontman Joel Peters, so no pressure there Joel! The album was recorded at their own Stompbox Studio and production was handled again by Todd Campbell. I’ve been eager to hear the album after the winning combo of the two pre released singles/videos – ‘Schizophrenia’ and ‘Hammer and Dance’. Just hearing that bass rumble from Tyla Campbell gives me goosebumps. The Motorhead influence is never far away, but the band have done a fine job of remaining on the cutting edge of modern hard rock at the same time.
The album (literally) kicks off with ‘Walking in Circles’, an up-tempo beast with another catchy Bastard chorus. We needn’t have been concerned about Joel Peters stepping up to the mark, he’s on fire throughout the record. I feel that what we have here is the definitive version of the band, they really are the full package now. Just watch them climb even higher than the dizzy heights they have already achieved.
Next up we have ‘Too Much is Never Enough’, another full-on rocker with drummer Dane Campbell whacking up a storm. The rock n roll lifestyle lyrics fit the song perfectly. ‘Strike the Match’ has an AC/DC vibe to it’s nod along opening bars before getting into more familiar territory with more chugging riffs. The album’s title track swaggers along nicely with some great guitar work. ‘The Hunt’ screams Motorhead, you can almost hear Lemmy in some of Peter’s phrasing. Some tasty double bass licks from Dane elevate the track nicely. ‘Show No Mercy’ has another barnstorming chorus that sticks in your head long after listening, the hallmark of any great tune!
‘No Guts! No Glory!’ again highlights the guitar prowess of the Lord Axsmith himself and Todd Campbell. They work together gloriously! My favourite song on the album is ‘Ghosts’, by far the most commercial track on the album, it will sound fantastic live. ‘Maniac’ closes the album with a rock n roll boogie and manages to get the word gobshite in the lyrics! Brilliant!
‘Kings of the Asylum’ is the bands best album to date, FACT! Superb performances, production values, and fantastic artwork make it one of 2023’s highlights. Keep ‘em coming lads. The album is released on Sep 1st 2023 on Nuclear Blast records and is available on CD, several vinyl variations, cassette, and there are bundles to pre order here
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Author: Kenny Kendrick