Wednesday 7 March 2018

Album Review: TURBONEGRO - RockNRoll Machine

Turbonegro - RockNRoll Machine

01. Chrome Ozone Creation (The Rock And Roll Machine Suite Part I)
02. Part II: Well Hello
03. Part III: RockNRoll Machine
04. Hurry Up & Die
05. Fist City
06. Skinhead Rock & Roll
07. Hot For Nietzsche
08. On the Rag
09. Let the Punishment Fit the Behind
10. John Carpenter Powder Ballad
11. Special Education

I've been a massive fan of Turbonegro since their 2005 Deathpunk masterpiece Party Animals. I was also fortunate enough to see them at Reading and Download festivals with that line-up, which cemented their place as one of my favourite bands of all time.

Their previous album Sexual Harassment, which was their first with new lead singer, Tony Sylvester, came out in 2012. It feels like yesterday that it was released, so it's a little scary to think that that was six years ago. Since then the band have released two digital singles, the phenomenally catchy Hot For Nietzsche (2015) and Special Education (2016). I absolutely love those songs, so I was happy to see that they were included on this new record. The album versions are a bit more stripped down and raw sounding. I hope this was a creative choice by the band, and not a reaction to the fans who complained about the keyboard levels and the slightly more commercial direction of the new material. As with most bands who have large back catalogues with various line-ups, there will always be some fans who are never happy and will be quite vocal about their grievances on YouTube or social media. Personally, I say "Fuck those people!"; Turbonegro rock and any band with such a rich history and bulletproof repertoire don't need to pander to internet assholes!

Despite my minor gripe about these new versions of the aforementioned singles, they're still awesome songs. Hot For Nietzsche, with its cheeky nod to Van Halen's Hot For Teacher, is one of the coolest party anthems ever, incorporating 70's arena rock into anthemic Punk. I wasn't too sure about the piano led intro at first, but it has really grown on me with repeated listens.

Hurry Up And Die is classic Turbonegro with its AC/DC style riff, mixed with high-octane Punk and witty lyrics about extreme sports daredevils. It's definitely a highlight.

John Carpenter Powder Ballad has some really cool synths that sound like they've been lifted from one of the 80's John Carpenter films, coupled with some Disco infused Hard Rock. It reminds me a little of Kiss' Unmasked era, which nobody except me seems to like. Regardless, I love it, and it's currently my favourite track until I change my mind again in about five minutes.

Overall, RockNRoll Machine is pretty awesome, and harks at all eras of the band's repertoire, whilst managing to bring something fresh to the table. It's great from start to finish, and the dark humour in the lyrics is as prevalent as always. I love it and can't wait to hear some of these songs live on their next tour!


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