Alestorm – “No Grave But The Sea” (Napalm Records)
Aye, calm or storm, there’s little that can stand in the way of the Scottish pirate party machine known as Alestorm! Since broadsiding us with their debut in 2008, this rum crew have sailed the seven seas into glory thanks to their massively catchy singalongs that mix eccentric Cap’n Jack humor with epic swashbuckling tales – yaaarrrrr!! Like a blended malt of rock metal incorporating ballsy riffs with bountiful folk and power metal melodies dished ably through founding privateer Christopher Bowes’s keytar along with accordions and fiddles, the upbeat joviality of the material cannot be understated for its incredible irresistibility. I honestly dare any miserable landlubber to not be hearty and yearning for the sea on the likes of ‘Pegleg Potion’ or the 8 minute epic of ‘Treasure Island’ resplendent with plenty of wig out soloing and yes, even the rhyming ‘Fucked with an Anchor‘ – clearly stealing after the Sex Pistols ‘Friggin’ In The Rigging’ har har. Given this is Alestorm’s 5th release has there been any progress? Well, new guitarist Máté Bodor adds his technical whizz on ‘Bar und Imbiss‘ and there are some longer songs – but overall, the winning formula has not been corrupted thankfully to the admiration of fans like me. So with absolutely no virtuoso pyrotechnics and the cheesiest of images, Alestorm still come out on top time n again cos of what matters the most – their music.