Album number three from a band gathering up a fair old head of steam, Germany’s The New Roses. Album number two, ‘Dead Man’s Voice’, was the sound of band starting to gel, and the end result was an album with very few, if any, low points. Album number three, ‘One More For The Road’, continues the high quality rock n’ roll, and succeeds in ticking all the required boxes. Riffs by the bucketload, and songs with staying power? Check, and check. Not so much a case of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”, more of a case of “Don’t overthink the fecking thing”! Don’t underestimate the power of guitars, drums and vocals, ‘tis truly a beautiful thing to behold. ‘One More For The Road’ is pretty much an instant album, with opener ‘Quarter To Twelve’ continuing where the last bars of ‘Dead Man’s Voice’ faded out last year. Simple, memorable, and easy to sing along to, what’s not to like? The New Roses get that every good rock song needs hooks, and thankfully, they packed plenty in. ‘My Own Worst Enemy’ has such a highly contagious vibe that resistance is futile. The groove is so dirty and sleazy that half of the fat, balding nostalgia acts on Sunset Strip are crying into their Bud Lites for not writing it back in the day.
‘Forever Never Comes’ sees a change in continent as The New Roses swap ‘Murica for Oz. AC/DC, Rose Tattoo… the influences seep through. The hooks, as they always are, are simple but effective. ‘Dancing On A Razor Blade’ is total unadulterated fun, as is ‘Life Ain’t Easy (For A Boy With Long Hair)’. Turn the dial all the way up and just go with it. ‘Every Wild Heart’ might begin like a U2 cover, but thankfully that fades away into one hell of a catchy four minutes. Remember… songs with staying power. I’m still humming the song days after first hearing them. Where’s the ballad though? That will be ‘Fight You Leaving Me’ then, complete with massive orchestral arrangements and soaring, uplifting vocals. Job done. ‘The Same Moon’ and ‘Piece By Peace Of Mind’ up the ante, and feature some sweet guitar solos before the band roll into the title track. Easily the stand out moment on the album, ‘One More For The Road’ is a classic piece of American rock (not by Americans, mind you). The imagery of life on the wide open road is forever associated with Americana, and this is as perfect a slice of Tom Petty/Bruce Springsteen-fused rock as you are likely to hear this year. The addition of a chunky keyboard sound is a stroke of genius, and gives the song another dimension.
‘One More For The Road’ doesn’t attempt to re-invent the wheel, the wheel is fine the way it is. Just be thankful there are still bands out there making wheels. The New Roses will make an appearance at this years Hard Rock Hell gathering in November. Following that, the band will be gracing UK venues in February 2018. Do yourself a favour, get your arse along to a gig, and while you’re at it, bring that mate that whinges about new bands not being like the old bands. In fact, bring two… let’s face it, we all know at least two.
Available now through Napalm Records. Tour dates and more information here.
Review: Dave Stott