Big Ball - Hotter Than Hell
AFM Records
Hard Rock
13 songs (47:42)
Release year: 2010
Big Ball, AFM Records
Reviewed by Aleksie
What you see is what you get. With Big Ball’s Hotter Than Hell, this worn-out saying couldn’t hold much more truth. The AC/DC-meets-KISS-connotation of the title line blasts out shamelessly on every single tune on this record, with a heavy emphasis on the former. From the muscular riffs to the no frills-rock beats to the lyrical odes to hard living, harder loving and general rock n’ roll-toughness, this German troupe makes no bones about their main influence. The singer’s screech is almost a dead ringer for Brian Johnson circa 1981 and the gang shouted choruses bow deeply to the Australian masters. The production job is well done, especially when keeping the pulsating bass lines commendably high in the mix.

The songs don’t leave much to be described musically. If you’ve heard some AC/DC, you know what’s coming behind every corner. The tempos may change from time to time, from the speedier neck-cranking of Killdozer and Riding With The Devil to the quality mid-tempo groove of say, Free Fire Zone and Rock N Roll Stomper. The guitar solos are slick, the vocal melodies catchy from time to time, but something is still missing. If your first guess is originality, you’d have a very good point but that’s not on my mind right now. The first thing that sticks out to me is that while AC/DC was extremely enjoyable for their occasional innuendos and double, sometimes triple entendres, Big Ball dispenses with all that and shoots from the hip with “mofos” to spare in a way that leaves little room for second guessing. Combined with the similarity of each song to the next and a hefty line-up of 13 such tunes, it just gets old too soon.

If I was through at least five cold brews within the last hour, I would definitely score this one at least 20 points higher, but in my current state of relatively clear consciousness, the “heard it better before”-factor weighs down too heavily on me. I think trimmed down to EP-lenght, this package would've been a lot more effective. As it is, in comparison to contemporary bands, guys like Airbourne easily do this same style with more vitriol and hooks. Still, if you want your boozing-music with a German flair, a relentless barrage of riffs and nothing fancy, Hotter Than Hell should be right up your red-lit alley.

Killing Songs :
Double Demon, Killdozer & Riding With The Devil
Aleksie quoted 65 / 100
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