An opening riff to rival anything Slash has done post Appetite; the anticipation of a great album is already firmly staged. Having been a huge fan of Full Throttle, to the level of it being one of the only 10/10 reviews on Scribes Of Metal, I really want ‘Destination Somewhere’ to blow me away, like, I really want that!
Massive have delivered album number two despite an apparent inability to stop touring, where they found the time to get these tracks recorded is a mystery. Ten tracks with an unmistakable ‘Massive’ sound, musically more mature and seemingly lyrically as well. The band have taken a few chances on this album stylistically, which works for me, if I’d wanted Throttle #2 I’d have just reordered the tracks and listened to that again.
We have a varying level of blues influence throughout the album, bringing out different elements in different tracks. Fusing a groove infested southern rock style, alt-rock elements and all the while being firmly held together by melodies designed to get the crowd singing along.
A great example of such fusing of styles appears in track 4 ‘The Fall’. Beefy down tempo (compared to most tracks) verses, with Aerosmith-worthy chorus hooks and a supercharged mid-section with melodic shred. If a band wanted to showcase versatility and give a lesson in how to deliver a formidable beast of a track – this is it.
Where ‘Destination Somewhere’ excels is in the way Massive have brought so many different elements into the mix, blending them together; like this is how they've always sounded. ‘Up In Smoke’, ‘Circus’, ‘One For The Road’ & ‘Sinking Ship’ bring sweaty adrenaline fuelled baddassness to the fore. ‘Bad Money Blues’ slaps on an extra slice of aggression.
In true Massive style, ‘The Way It’s Always Been’ is a party package, with its mono sounding first quarter – you’re looking at the live show jam track. ‘Destination Somewhere’ the title track has the party feel to it as well, although another example of Massive being able to use their versatility across different styles to ‘bring it!’.
Album closer ‘Beaten Dog’ is the stark contrast with a stripped down large room feel, vocal harmonies having more importance. While on first listen this was the easiest track to dismiss, the country flow doesn’t usually do it for me, the level of control in the vocals and use of dynamics drew me in and reminded me to re-watch Young Guns (1 not 2).
If I could take one track from the album, marry it and have babies – we’d be looking to ‘Made Of Stone’. This track stands out from the pack, which isn’t easy considering how great the rest of the album is. Brad Marr (vocals) pushes his own limits in places, and where lesser mortals would crack he manages to hold it together delivering a raw impassioned performance. While not wanting to compare, I’m getting a taste of Velvet Revolver’s Falling To Pieces, it’s that good.
So, we’ve reached conclusion time, did Destination Somewhere touch me in the private places only special people get to go? 100% YES! It’s like Massive crawled inside my brain and digested everything I want to hear then went away, had a beer, followed by a single take in the studio to lay down my next favourite album. I’m fully backing the resurgence of ‘real rock’, back in the day of Monsters Of Rock these guys would be propelled up the main stage quicker than a Hare on a greyhound track. If like me, you’re a fan of bands that can ‘bring it’, real, raw and raucous – then rush out and buy this bloody album.
Go check out our interview with Brad Marr, guitarist for Massive