Games Meet Metal: Poser or Powerhouse? Airbourne - No Guts No Glory

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Thursday, April 8, 2010

Poser or Powerhouse? Airbourne - No Guts No Glory

If rock n' roll was to stay the same forever, in theory I think I'd get bored with it; in practice, Airbourne reminds me that when done right, loud and fast riffing about drug addiction, hot women, and overcoming working class hardships will always kick ass. This band has been compared to AC/DC more times by more people than I can count (including myself) and the comparison is deserved in terms of style despite Airbourne having a bit more speed and a singer that's quite a bit smoother than their predecessor's recent efforts. Why anyone thinks that's a bad thing, I will never know because Airbourne's classic rock n' roll style is just what I want to hear in a sea of depressing new wave shit.

The album has four themes: working class anthems, hot girl anthems, drug anthems, and rock n' roll in general anthems. Songs like "Steel Town" finally give musical recognition to the lower class steel mill cities that spawned the likes of Black Sabbath, and "No Way but the Hard Way" which refers to the band's poor conditions starting out is a truly inspirational piece of simple rock about overcoming hardship. "Chewin' the Fat" is hilariously euphemistic, "Blond Bad and Beautiful" rivals any classic 80s song about long legged knockouts and "Armed and Dangerous" may just be the best groove on the record, with a lovely speedy outro to boot that makes it like the made up word heard halfway through it: sexstacy.

Songs like "Overdrive", "Back on the Bottle", and "White Line Fever" are potentially depressing lyrically considering just how much excessive drug intake can fuck you up (and the lyrics don't hide that fact), but musically decide to take a much more upbeat route reminding that sex, drugs, and rock n' roll may have terrible downsides but at least the music they produce is a hell of a lot more enjoyable than a boring straight edge ballad. "It Ain't Over 'Til It's Over" is the best song here to start a mosh to, and "Raise the Flag" and "Born to Kill" to great justice to the idea of songs made purely to praise rock n' roll.

Airbourne may not offer anything particularly new, but what it does offer is an upbeat tribute to sex, drugs and rock n' roll that just so happens to be very refreshing when you can't stand any more metal dedicated to wallowing in defeat to hellish garden trolls. Airbourne express just as many problems as the next rock band in their music, but they have the decency to celebrate the joy of overcoming their obstacles and having a really good time rather than bitching about how shitty things are. That attitude and the music it creates are just flat out Slaytanic. 5/5

Pros: Every track is great, upbeat, and celebrates sex drugs and rock n' roll in a positive way

Cons: Definitely not winning any awards for most original album ever

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