Review Summary: Charm City Devils return to a time when Rock music was about drinking, partying and power ballads that would get you laid. Despite the somewhat cheesey album title, they're worth checking out.
Charm City Devil front man, John Allen starts the first track of with a boisterous "So Lets Rock and Roll!" and that's exactly what the band does for 11 tracks. The Charm City Devils were the first band signed to Nikki Sixx (Motley Crue) Eleven-Seven label and Sixx said that the band impressed him by having elements of credible bands like Aerosmith and AC/DC. That sounds about right to me, because prior to reading the bit from Sixx, and after listening to the first three tracks on this CD, I said to myself "this sounds like a blusier version of AC/DC."
Defying Nu-metal and scene bands, there's zero angst found on this CD. That's a refreshing change from album after album put out by modern rock bands that have little to talk about other than how horrible life is. After the title track, Charm City Devils follow up with two uptempo rockers (House of Fire and 10,000 Miles). Both songs are fast and fun, the kind of song that makes you want to sing along and beat on the dash board of your vehicle.
Best of the Worst is the first ballad on the album and reminds me a lot of the hair metal band that wasn't really hair metal, Cinderella. John Allen gets a chance to show that he can actually sing a bit and that he's not all gravel-gargling shouting. For whatever reason, this song really hits a chord with me. I want to be singing at my high school talent show because I know it's going to melt panties. There's also some cool, unique sounding guitar working coming out of the chorus.
While the album isn't angst-packed, lyrically the band is still very passionate. The fifth track, "True Love (Hell Yeah)" covers the journey through life (and is probably my favorite track, I challenge you not to respond when Allen sings in the chorus "Can I get a Hell Yeah? Can I get a Good Lord? Can I get ah One-Two?". "Money," "Burn Baby Burn" and "Pour Me" all rock with thick guitars, fast beats and fist pumps. "Almost Home" is the albums second down tempo song and deals with Allen's discovery of his mother's breast cancer.
In summary, this album takes me back to the days when Rock was awesome. It's passionate without being pretentious or whiney. It's simple enough that you don't have to have a PhD in music theory to appreciate it but there's enough going on to prevent you from tossing the CD onto your floorboard after few listens. If you're a fan of AC/DC, Aerosmith or even Cinderella, you should check this band out.