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Don’t look now, but Florida’s Alter Bridge has done it again.  They’ve gone and finally put together their sixth album, entitled Walk the Sky and again the band has assembled what some just might call a masterpiece.  For the last decade and a half, Alter Bridge has teased us with their style, be it Rock or more on the Metal side of things.  They are keeping us on our toes this time around, releasing a set of songs that could either be standard Alter Bridge, or a breakthrough which will undeniably push further out the boundaries of what we perceive this band to be.  After giving this record a handful of spins, I lean toward the latter.

“Wouldn’t You Rather”, the album’s opening song, greets is with a hypnotic middle eastern-like riff which you can feel is furiously leading up to something.  That something is one of the most instrumentally devastating riffs I’ve heard in a long while; testing the limits of the digital medium I was enjoying these sounds on. The band continues this approach on “Take the Crown” and “Indoctrination” and “Clear Horizon” which feature some heavy twist and turning guitar work, coupled with the top-notch vocal work by the multi-talented Myles Kennedy who always delivers and never disappoints. “Pay No Mind”, a big fat meandering riff leading into another unmistakable chorus that surely concert-goers across the globe with gladly sing along to.

Perhaps though, the highlight of the album is the song “Godspeed”. A stop you in your tracks anthem, this epic tune showcases Kennedy’s range and conviction.  The opening piano gives way to easily the most melodic tune on the album.  The upbeat melody of the song somewhat hides what could be some very emotional lyrics, and interestingly, one could find themselves both uplifted and sad at the same time.  An interesting feat.  For me this is easily the most intriguing song on the album and should burn the airwaves for some time.

At first glance this album feels a bit like it might lack an identity.  But as you listen and absorb all what Alter Bridge is offering here, you soon realize that IS the identity of this record. A showcase of talent and growth musically which marks what could be the birth of some surefire rock classics. 

Surely there are those cynics out there that would expect Alter Bridge to just release another excuse to tour; a cookie cutter record sounding just like the previous.  Far from it.  They have put together a diverse, adventuresome, thoughtful group of songs which further puts on display the incredible talent of this band in a way that prevents labeling them as anything but alive and kicking.  This is one album that begs exploration.  


As always, rock on my friends!     Hunnypot Approved!     Overall Rating:  8.9 out of 10

Artist:  Alter Bridge LP: Walk the Sky  Release Date: Oct 18th, 2019, Label:  Napalm Records


John McAteer

Photojournalist - Orange County

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