Drummer Vinny Appice's and bassist Rex Brown's new band, Kill Devil Hill, is yet another project where some well known musicians gather to try to create a new chapter in music history. There are so many of them these days, so keeping track of them is a difficult task.
Mr. Appice is in the talks for the upcoming Black Sabbath reunion, so this band will probably be on loose strings for a while, if Tony Iommi recovers from his diagnosed cancer and Bill Ward decides not to join the reunited band. Unknown vocalist Dewey Bragg and a man with a motley past, guitarist Mark Zavon, completes this band into a unit of four.
Heavy metal with large portions of the nineties and with potent grunge elements in the groove, is what comes in mind when listening to this self titled debut album. Many of the songs sounds similar to each other with their beats and slow pace. There's a certain lack of diversity, except for the ballad Mysterious Ways; a part psychedelic track with kind of bluesy elements.
Kill Devil Hill should in no way be confused with the grunge era however, since they are much heavier, almost doomy from time to time and the guitar shredding is totally different with licks, heavy and slow riffs, as well as solos.
The album has a couple of good songs, but I miss those slap in the face, hit by a truck and run over by a freight train-songs, as most of them quietly pass me by. The rhythm section with their steady flow and the vocal performances of Mr. Bragg are almost flawless, but one song is just followed by another one and even after listening to this album several times, I don't feel that urge to listen to it over and over again.
Well performed and skilled musicians don't equal great music as the most difficult part is writing great songs.
Edit, 17 March 2012: After this review was written
and posted, the release date has been pushed back to late spring. It
was decided that a song who would work as a bonus track in fact might
be released as a single. Therefore the band will record an additional
song that will work as a bonus track instead.