CD REVIEW: WHITFORD St. HOLMES – Reunion
3 June, 2016
Reviewed by Shane Pinnegar
As guitarist for Aerosmith, and guitarist/vocalist for Ted Nugent and Spinal Tap inspiration respectively, Brad Whitford and Derek St. Holmes trod the biggest stages in the world, just a step or three behind two of the most gregarious, gonzoid band leaders the world has ever seen.
The duo hooked up in 1981 as Whitford St. Holmes to record an excellent but under-appreciated self-titled album of rock anthems, toured a bit, and then both went on to other endeavours.
No less than 34 years later they returned to record a follow-up – suitably titled Reunion, which was available at live shows last year, and now finally has an official release via Mailboat Records, and as a bonus, that original 1981 album is included as a bonus disc.
An adventurous foray into hard rock with a boogie edge, Reunion might just be the best ‘80s Nugent album there never was.
St. Holmes still possesses a great singing voice, and it’s a joy to hear him in his element here, and Whitford sounds like he’s having a ball finally let off the leash and playing his own music. Musically speaking there’s not much the duo can’t do, and in unison with Chopper Anderson on bass, Buck Johnson on keys and Troy Luccketta on drums, they’ve delivered an album far more coherent, vital and enjoyable than Aerosmith have in a decade or two.
There’s only nine tracks here, but every one is a killer, from opening rocker Shapes to the raunchy Hot For You, Spinal Tap-esque Hell Is On Fire, the ‘70s groove of Shake It, and the heavier Flood Of Lies, a song that grabs hold of you from the start and doesn’t let go, leaving you a bit stunned that they chose it as the closing track!
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