Tank - War Machine
Metal Mind Records
Heavy Metal
9 songs (51:03)
Release year: 2010
Tank, Metal Mind Records
Reviewed by Goat

Although it contains not a single one of the three members who made Tank’s debut Filth Hounds Of Hades the well-respected bit of punky NWOBHM greatness that it was, comeback effort War Machine nonetheless rocks hard, and rocks well. The new line-up includes Doogie White on vocals, formerly of Pink Cream 69, Rainbow and Yngwie Malmsteen’s band, as well as former Bruce Dickinson bassist Chris Dale, and together with Mick Tucker and Cliff Evans on guitars and drummer Mark Brabbs, the band manage to make the first Tank album in eight years a killer. More plain ol’ Heavy Metal than a throwback to their classic Motörhead-y NWOBHM sound, War Machine nonetheless is sure to appeal to fans of the genre, as well as the less flowery Power Metal types. Opening stormer Judgement Day mixes Doogie’s uplifting Dio-esque wail with some ripping riffage in almost Judas Priestly style, meat-and-potato metal. No, there’s nothing especially progressive and original about it, but it is undoubtedly done damn well, and it’s a fine opener to a fine album. The following Feast Of The Devil slows things down a little, another crushing riff backing another fine performance from Doogie – the band are clearly professionals, they work together wonderfully.

Songs aren’t especially varied, but are more than different enough to be great, Phoenix Rising taking on a slightly more epic tone and keeping you headbanging for the full near-seven-minute running time. I couldn’t find much wrong with any of the tracks present, even the mournful title track and the dangerously-close-to-a-ballad After All – Doogie’s voice carries you along despite any doubts. To be honest, people are cruel; as the band were castigated back in the day for being a Motörhead clone, so I can predict that some will criticise here for the Dio similarities. I don’t see that as a real problem, to be honest. It’s a good tribute rather than a poor imitation, and Dio fans won’t be particularly bothered, especially considering that, again, Doogie does a great, great job. The rollicking Great Expectations alone is sure to cause many a good time, and although at over fifty minutes the album could have dropped a song without dropping in quality (by the time you’ve got to final track My Insanity you will start to watch-check) it’s hard to really criticise the band. Tank make music they love, for people that love it, and that, my friends, has to be applauded. When all is said and done, what this album ultimately comes down to is the cover art. That classic logo, a picture of a tank and War Machine... could the message be any clearer?

Killing Songs :
Judgement Day, Phoenix Rising, War Machine, The Last Laugh
Goat quoted 79 / 100
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There are 4 replies to this review. Last one on Mon Oct 11, 2010 8:29 pm
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