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Swanky Tiger comes out swinging with Empires, their new album with songs that bring a rush of adrenaline and the focus and capture of a solid hard rock album. A sound that fits right into 2015 where hard rock is lead by current artists like Five Finger Death Punch, Slash & Myles Kennedy, Starset, or Alter Bridge. There’s still some intimacy with the material on this album. The group has found a fine balance between overdrive power and softer undertones with their songwriting. It’s that balance of dynamics that bounce back and forth all throughout that gives a warmer, rather than raunchy rock sound.

The band certainly harnessed their understanding of the component that make hard rock easy to listen to, with strong guitar riffs not just for the song’s main hook, but to build up around choruses, bridges, and strategic fills. It’s one thing to turn the gain all the way up, but great rock guitar sound comes from tone, and it’s easy to appreciate the experimentation of different distortional voices in songs like “If Live is but A Dream.” There’s also a capture of real creativity with strong solos that fit really well onto songs like “Half Light.” “Bad Operator.”

Don’t feel like it’s strictly a one-trick pony however. The album also allows the bass to set the tone with it’s own unique signature riffs all throughout the album in “Bad Operator,” “Glamorous,” and a really lively “Metamorphosize.”


Whiskey Rating: 3.5 out of 5 Shots

Article by: Tommy Shackleford

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