Phil Campbell And The Bastard Sons features Motὂrhead guitarist Phil Campbell alongside his sons Todd Campbell on guitar, Dane Campbell on drums, Tyla Campbell on bass, and vocalist Neil Starr. The Age Of Absurdity is the debut album from the hard rock group and is set for release on January 26th through Nuclear Blast Records.
Ringleader opens with heavy sludging electric guitar and drums, with awesome double kick from the drummer. Rhythm and lead guitar harmonise perfectly, soaring over and under each other throughout the track. Whilst the instrumental is repetitive, the energy and excitement of the song distracts you from it and overall it’s a great opener. The impression from this track is that the album is going to be high octane and high energy. The music is really going to get you up out of your seat and pogoing around.
Next up is Freak Show. More high energy than the opening track with the guitars starting off being right in your face, and demanding that you pay attention. The bass is a little more focussed in this track and is toward the forefront of the rhythm, unlike with the first track where it wasn’t as noticeable. There’s a rather impressive guitar solo that kicks in around the 1.50 mark and goes for a solid 45 seconds. The chorus of ‘The Freak show starts after midnight’ is an exciting lyric that makes the whole track feel a lot more interesting than it already is, and intrigues the mind about what exactly the ‘freak show’ entails.
Skin And Bones is heavier than the first two tracks right from the get-go and you’re definitely going to want to head bang along. If the drums don’t make you feel the beat like a punch to the chest you aren’t listening to this track loud enough and you need to pump up the volume. The chugging guitars bring the track to a soaring start that follows through to a crushing ending.
The drums open track four, Gypsy Kiss, followed by loud yet beautiful guitars and then eventually the vocals. Both guitarists have some amazing skills and they both get their chance to shine throughout this track. With drums and bass playing counterpoints to the lead and rhythm guitars this one really gives each member of the band their time in the spotlight. It’s also one of the shorter tracks on the album but it’s aggressive, fast and loud. The intro to this one also has a Motorhead vibe with similarities to Ace Of Spades.
If you need an anthem to get you pumped up for a concert, for a busy day of work, or just something to get you excited in the morning? Welcome To Hell is definitely the song for you! The first thing that comes to mind when listening to this track is blasting it loud on your car stereo, on your phone or computer to put you in a good mood. High octane, loud, heavy and upbeat. This is also a song that you can put on repeat a few times and you won’t get bored of it, you’ll want to learn the words so you can shout and scream them along.
Acoustic guitar, electric guitars, drums, bass and a harmonica. Dark Days has a definitive country vibe and influence. One of the slower tracks on the album, this is a heavy song that you can slow dance to, but also one that you’re going to want to rock out to. It’s a personal favourite of this reviewers and it had my attention from the very first bar. The guitar solo in this song is also a highlight of the album in my humble opinion.
After the relaxed Dark Days, this following track Dropping The Needle brings that high energy right back up again. The loud and aggressive guitars that open this track remind you that you’re listening to a hard rock album and while the previous track could be described as a ballad, this one most definitely isn’t. Lyrically the song is about Rock n Roll being everyone’s addiction and is a feel-good song.
If headbanging and aggressive air guitar are your thing, Step Into The Fire is the song for you! Lyrically repetitive and enforcing the message of stepping into the fire and burning, as well as covering the topic of hate. If people have you feeling down and are making you feel bad about yourself, Step Into The Fire is the song that you turn on extra loud and rock out extra hard to remind yourself that you do mean something, and the people that hate you aren’t shit.
Whilst Step Into The Fire is the song you listen to to make yourself feel better, Get On Your Knees is the song you blast in the faces of the people who think they’re better than you. The main emphasis of the lyrics is about never wanting to be like the people that put you down. Throw this track in their faces and prove that you’re a better person than they are, and you never want to be like them.
High Rule really gives the bass a chance to shine here with the instrument opening the song and being pretty much at the forefront. Another musically impressive track with lyrics and vocals to match. Another track that you’re going to need a lot of energy to mosh too, and another one that’s going to pump you up.
Lastly we have Into The Dark, which is another track that has country influences and can be described as the ballad of the album and works perfectly as a closing the track. The song has the perfect mix of the heavy, hard rock side of the band that we’ve been introduced to throughout the album, as well as the softer side that we were introduced to in Dark Days. Overall, a stellar debut album from what promises to be an exciting band.