Blessed Hellride – “Bastards & Outlaws” (Rodeostar / SPV)
With a band name and album title like this you can probably tell it’s biker rock – and hell yeah, that’s just what this is from the speed limit free autobahns of Germany! Big, greasy, tattooed, JD-Cola swilling Deutsch extras from ‘Sons Of Anarchy’ who salute and give much respect to their American kameraden in Black Label Society, Lynyrd Skynyrd and Clutch through big, swaggering monster riffs revved through the twin burnin’ dirty wailing guitars of Jack Stoned and The (one and only) Oos as if tutored by Zakk Wylde himself. The laughably named Tiny Fuel – who of course is the biggest dude fronting this Trier Rock City chapter – certainly has a big throat to match the fearsome torque being put out through his man mountain vocals, possessing just the right hint of gravel along with manly soulful screaming to add to the machismo exuding from the 13 bad luck tracks here. From the stomping biker run of ‘Devil’s Ride’ to the heavy grooving anthem of ‘Goddamn Hippie’, where the reverb from the guitars sounds just like a coupla growling bike engines and the singalong chorus of …’the goddamn hippie’s a dope smoker, enjoying the simple life..’ simply draws you ever closer to these lovable rogues. Clearly inspired by American legends themselves, Blessed Hellride tell it all on the dark n grim ‘Blood Red River‘, another monster riffing masterpiece capped off by the huge rhythm of El Fritto’s deep bass and the Captain’s heavy duty drums. I can think of a few bands I’d be listening to tripping down old Route 66, and after the near perfection of “Bastards & Outlaws”, Blessed Hellride would definitely be one of them.