Tuesday, 3 February 2015

The Deep - Premonition (CD Review)

01.The Rider
02.You Take My Breath Away
04.Cold Hearted
05.All I Want
06.Out Of Touch
10.Turn Me Loose

Tony Coldham (Vocals)
Paul Smith (Guitar)
Mick Feleppa (Guitar)
Don Whiberley (Bass)
Steve Kingsley (Drums)

Way back in the days of the NWOBHM there was a band called Deep Machine, by 1982 they were on the brink of splitting up after guitarist Kevin Heybourne (Ex Angelwitch) had just quit the band along with vocalist and drummer to reform AngelWitch.
This left guitarist John Wiggins and bassist Andy Wrighton the task of finding new members, which they did in the shape of ex-Minas Tirith vocalist Tony Coldham and ex-Burn guitarist Tony Harris, however just as the band were getting sorted out Wiggins was invited to join Paul Di’Anno’s new band Lonewolf.
Open auditions were then held and guitarist Paul Smith (ex-Janine) and drummer Steve Kingsley (ex-Omega) were brought into the fold. Within weeks the band had recorded a demo and was gigging. The 1982 line up of Deep Machine quickly developed a reputation for excellent song writing and musicianship and, most importantly, for dynamic and exciting live shows.
But as is the way of bands this line up soon went their seperate ways, Coldham, Harris and Smith went on to form Strutt, Wrighton joined John Wiggins in Tokyo Blade and Kingsley joined Rogue Male.

Now lets jump forward to 2012, some thirty years after they had last played together, the members of the 1982 line-up of Deep Machine got together again for a blast in a rehearsal studio. They were all amazed at how good it still sounded and four of the members decided to re-form the band with the exception of Wrighton who had commitments to Tokyo Blade.
At this point the band members were now unable to use the name Deep Machine because it was already taken, so they instead adopted the name The Deep. Sadly, Tony Harris was also forced to pull out of the project because of an ongoing physical illness which prevents him from being able to play guitar. However, Tony’s contribution to the band in terms of song writing has been immense and he remains, in many ways, the band’s ‘sixth member’.

Coldham, Kingsley and Smith auditioned bass players with the intention of working as a four piece, for a while another ex-AngelWitch band member Kevin Riddles joined the band. Eventually, Mick Feleppa, a guitarist Coldham knew from his days in Strutt was recruited together with comparative new-comer Don Whiberley on bass. Then, near the end of 2013, the band proceeded to record a self-financed, self-produced album, Premonition, at The Vatican recording studios in the east-end of London.

Talk about authentic NWOBHM and this would be the defination, the opening song 'The Rider' is pure old school, part Saxon and part Black Axe, but and its an important "but" this is all The Deep, solid guitar playing, polished vocals and up to date sound (think Amulet) but wearing its Colours proud for all to hear and see.

Slightly more restrained is 'You Take My Breath Away' a mid paced hard rock song with excellent backing vocals.

'Nightstalker' another great song with its perfect mix of old meets new, kinda waiting for this one to go in a different direction and it does not dissapoint about half way through it changes pace and gets heavier and a great solo as well.

Slower and near rock ballad 'Cold Hearted' follows, have to say its the passion in the vocal delivery that just saves this one for me.

'All I Want' is quite anthemic, good chorus, one destined for fist punching in the air and mass headbanging down the front row at the next gig i think!

I'm sure the band wouldn't agree, but to me 'Out Of Touch' has an american radio rock feel, tinges of Van Halen and Motley Crue lurk here, really good song especially blasting out of the radio on the motorway.

Title track 'Premonition' starts with some excellent fretwork from the guitarist and then explodes out of the speakers, a real solid rocker for 6 awesome minutes.

Oh yes, hell is this one good, 'Spellbound' a blues laden slab of classic british hard rock, driven along by the drums this one is an instant hit for me.

'Saga' whilst overall another great song, does tend to lean towards the rock ballad, and thats a style not for me, but excellent vocals and for once a non slash like guitar solo, mean that i can just about listen to it without having to click next on the player.

Final track is 'Turn Me Loose' nice guitar opening, followed by some great twin guitar action and looks like we are heading for another ballad type, but wait, oh yes, its suddenly kicks in, boy does this one leave you wanting more and what a guitar solo, absolutley screaming!

Welcome back guys, fucking awesome album!

Rating 10/10
For Fans Of: Saxon, Amulet, Tygers Of Pan Tang, Soldier, Weapon, Legend

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