For more than forty year brothers Carmine and Vinny Appice have worked with many renowned artists in the metal scene and the first joint studio album “Sinister” showcases these drummers’ exceptional talent and also features some great guest vocalists/musicians.
Featuring Jim Crean on vocals the title track takes some time to get the groove going as melodic atmospheres prepare the listeners for a more rambunctious rhythm attentively built by crunchy guitars and eclectic drumming.
With Paul Shortino on vocals and Bulletboys guitarist Mick Sweda “Monsters And Heroes” immediately channels groovy hard rock flavors as gritty guitar riffs craft catchy dynamics leading to a big old school chorus while polished guitar leads add flamboyant melodic variety.
“Drum Wars” is a way to impress the audience with the Appice brothers drumming skills and the result is certainly entertaining as it doesn’t just feel like putting together a bunch of drums solos since guitars actively participate to ensure a groovy rock essence.
Featuring guitarist Bumblefoot and vocalist Jim Crean “In The Night” tends to favor inspired melodic tonalities with a majestic guitar work full of several simply outstanding leads/solos and the easy chorus effortlessly enhances the overall hard rock style.
“You Got Me Running” is quite unique as it features Carmine on vocals delivering a true veteran rocker style yet there aren’t incredible surprises in terms of songwriting as, once again, guitars and drums focus on the creation of accessible rocking grooves.
On “War Cry” vocalist Paul Shortino joins forces with Whitesnake stringsman Joel Hoekstra to deliver a full blown classic hard rock rhythmic galore with a mix of raw riffing and fancy melodic guitar leads that inevitably hold a sense of nostalgia but also a solid headbanging friendly groove.
With Jim Crean back on vocals, Erik Turner on guitar and keyboardist Erik Norlander the enjoyable “Sabbath Mash” pays homage to Black Sabbath successfully putting together a diabolically wild medley of “Iron Man,” “War Pigs,” and “Paranoid”.
“Sinister” stays true to a cohesive classic rock/metal formula packed also with plenty of catchy melodic moments and as expected the drums in each song tend to stand out for ability and passion as the Appice brothers carefully put together a quite entertaining record.