Monday, March 31, 2008

CD Review: Cheat the Devil by The Young Werewolves

Philadelphia is probably best known in the music world as the birthplace of rhythym and blues, but don't let that fool you, it's also home to some of the best horror rock around, and no, I'm not talking about Richie Sambora's solo album. The Young Werewolves return with "Cheat the Devil," an album full of clawing guitars, snarling vocals and as if that weren't enough, the 'wolves grabbed Sid Haig! The legendary horror actor lends his deep baritone for the intro to "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" and he also gets an executive producer credit.

The CD starts off with the rollicking "Hollywood," a guitar-driven tune guaranteed to have you howling along with the chorus. Next up is "Mischief Night," and Shewolf Dana Kain sings this one like she'll just as soon stab you in the gut as soon as give you a wink. "Devil Dancer Girl" has the 'wolves showcasing their rockabilly tendencies and "Cheatin' the Devil" kicks it up a frenetic notch. I think I actually had flames coming out of my speakers when I cranked the latter tune up! Next up is "Run Away," one of the best overall songs on the album as far as lyrics and music are concerned, simply excellent. "Fire" starts like a slow burn and steadily heats up to an inferno of hellacious goodness! Following an ominous lead in by Mr. Haig, "Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde" slowly grows into a steady rocker. The eighth track, "Gala Monster Rally," is sure to be an instant Halloween party staple as it is purely groovy. "Satan's Daughter" finds the 'wolves back in their rockabilly groove with a little Reverand Horton Heat-esque attitude thrown in for good measure. "Touched by a Demon" and "Guns,Guns,Guns" are solid rockers and "Shapeshifter" has an instantly infectious groove that's primed for gyrating with your favorite wolf on the dance floor as everybody sings --"Everybody's howling, Everybody's howling in the moonlight!." The CD's final listed track is "Tattooed Aliens," and it's an enjoyable little ditty with some out-of-this-world guitar antics. There is a bonus track on the CD, and since it's not listed on the back of the disc, I'm not going to reveal it here. All I can say is it's a fitting song for these hungry 'wolves yet not a song I would have ever imagined them covering, but it just goes to show that when it comes to the Young Werewolves, they have plenty of suprises up their sleeves. Perhaps that's how they were able to Cheat the Devil!

The Young Werewolves are back! And they've brought with them a fantastic album full of diversity. From punk to rockabilly to pure rock-n-roll, the Young Werewolves show once again why they lead the horror rock pack in Philadelphia. Cheat the Devil is a hands-down winner - ****1/2 out of ***** aces!!

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