(8/10) It creates some excitment and curiosity when Jean Beauvoir and Micki Free team-up to work on an album. Both have been the driving forces behind AOR rocker Crown Of Thorns, but the two guys have been also successful with their other bands/projects. Micki Free won e.g. a Grammy Award for his contribution to the Beverly Hills Cop movie soundtrack and Beauvoir had, amongst others, an excellent release with Voodoo X.
The duo signed a deal in 2014 with Frontiers which was the first step for the new album called "American trash". Listening to Jean Beauvoir, "'American trash" is "the continuation of the Beauvoir/Free sound as the writing team for Crown Of Thorns". It feels like the old vibe is back again - transferred into the new century.
"American trash" comes with eleven songs that are melodic hardrock with crunchy guitars and excellent hooks - typical trademarks of the two guys.
The opener "Angel's cry" sets the tone of voice for the album. It's an powerful tune that starts with a hard riff and makes clear from the beginning that we don't talk about sticky sweet hardrock. "Morning after" takes the same line by adding more groove to the sound. It's a bit slower than the opener and the hook work immediately. Also the smartly embedded keyboards add something to the track instead of outplaying all the other instruments. The title songs is again more guitar based hardrock with great vocals and a strong beat. I have to say that I was reminded to "American woman". A cool title track and in total three excellent numbers to start an album.
There are are also the more silent moments on "American trash". The soulful "Just breathe", a piano-based ballad, is one of those. It is great music that avoids cliches by being well-crafted. "Never give up" is also belonging into this group. Slightly different than "Just breathe" it is an acoustic one that is touching too.
And there is "Cold dark December" which belongs to the hardest tunes on "American trash". Guitars are downtuned and heavy, the melody spreads a certain dark vibe by still being very groovy. One of the hightlights on the album.
"American trash" doesn't come with any filler, done by experienced and passionated guys that are full of creativity. Good stuff.
- Angels cry
- Morning after
- American trash
- Just breathe
- Shotgun to the heart
- Never give up
- Cold dark December
- It's never too late
- She's a KO
- There's no starting over