Cor : The Spanish ’77 has released some highly appreciated albums previously, with early AC/DC as foundation and additional ingredients cunningly mixed to something of their own. Some additional influences in the direction of Status Quo, Sweet and Thin Lizzy are not as much available as before though. Instead they added more in the direction of Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin. The band explains the slight change in direction to an urge to give the music a more dark character; something that they succeeded in certainly for a part.
The opening track ‘Bread & Circus’ makes it clear immediately, these guys want to take a different approach; no longer just catchy party rock riffs and certainly no more happy bubblegum atmospheres. The riff and arrangement try to create tension but the voice can be experienced as lingering or even straight querulous. This actually goes in general for this new album; the riffs and arrangements are creative, surprising and cunningly made, and the material is more diverse than before, still the combination of the instrumental parts and the vocals can lead to boredom or even irritation with some listeners. I know, Ozzy (or even Neil Young) are highly appreciated for comparable vocal lines, or they get away with it at least, but I’m not sure the same will happen with the contributions of Armand Valeta. I don’t know why I appreciate this stuff from Ozzy or even Ironbird or Lord Vicar without any trouble, and do have my doubts with this pretty similar lines of ’77, but I do know this one might grow; because of the great arrangements and expressive performance, even some vocal lines are more appreciated after a few listening sessions. Personally I can appreciate both AC/DC and Black Sabbath, but in this case concerning the inspirations of ’77, I initially prefer the AC/DC foundation.