Release date: 1st October 2015 via Retrowrek
Torme is a Rock’n’Roll legend. Picking up a guitar in Dublin at 11-year-old he found him catapulted on major Rock stages with the biggest names when he took the decision to leave Ireland in 1974. His Rock CV is more than impressive (Ozzy Osbourne/Dee Snider/Ian Gillan) yet he is one of the most humbled chap you would come across in the circus of Rock when most aspirant stars behave like clowns rather than musicians.
Crowdfunded 'Black Heart' is a joy for sore ears that may have come too accustomed to Nu or Alt music. This is a pure Rock’n’Roll album from the get go powerful and in your face, think Keith Richards on steroids with Golden Pig setting the tone and opening the album followed by the exciting 1985 (Keeper of The Flame). Blues, Hard Rock and some touch of Boogie are reminiscent of Bernie’s influences such as Rory Gallagher or even the hard rocking’ side of Thin Lizzy. But make no mistake, this is no copycat, this is more a tribute to his musical heroes embedded in his own style rather than surfing on some kind of nostalgia.
Bernie is in total control of the album (nowadays he does not do managers anymore :) ). On Fire, Into The Sun, and Dirt are as raw and genuine as rock'n'roll can be, almost a Punk attitude with an intent to wake up your dormant soul that has been watching the X-Factor for too long. Bernie’s guitarist prowess have been praised numerous times in the past so I will not dwell on this apart. From saying that: if you like your guitar hot and possessed by the demon of talent, you will not be disappointed.
Miles to Babylon, Steady Roller Blues are making incursions in a more traditional format type of Rock and are equally enjoyable and it is with sadness that you reach the last track "Party’s Over". Having said that it ain’t over until it’s over and you can play the album over and over again.
By Pascal Derrien
Overall: a must buy for rock and guitar fans
If you pick 3 only: 1985, Into The Sun, Dirt
Live test: Double Thumbs Up
'Black Heart' track listing:
1. Track Listing 2. Golden Pig 3. 1985 (Keeper of The Flame) 4. Better Days 5. Snake in The Garden 6. Flow 7. Into The Sun 8. Pain Song 9. Dirt 10. Steady Roller Blues 11. Miles to Babylon 12. Party’s Over
Bernie Tormé - vocals, guitar
Chris Heilmann - bass
Ian Harris - drums, percussion
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