Sunday, December 1, 2019

Super Vintage's Destiny Is A Wild Ride Through The World of 70's Hard Rock

Stravos Papadopoulos is not a name that rolls of the tongue. But in his homeland of Greece, he's a bit of a rock god. He plays guitar like a great ax slinger from the 1970's. In fact the 70's are all over his band Super Vintage. Those two words absolutely describe what this band is all about. They have released four albums to date, all on the amazing Grooveyard Records label.

Destiny is their fourth album and it is unapologetic in it's bluesy guitar based splendor. Stravos sings like he's just guzzled a half pint of whiskey right before heading over to the mic. This lethal combination of greasy vocals, blazing guitars and jackhammer drums, make this album totally unique in today's music world. The lead track, "Rock and Roll Saviors" comes off as a bit autobiographical. The build up to the body of the song is AC/DC-like in it's level of anticipation. The hooks are not as obvious but are still very effective.

Bands to reference: The Black Crowes, Led Zeppelin, Bad Company, Thin Lizzy, The Outlaws and Moxy. There are bits and pieces of everything you've heard from this era, but Super Vintage retains their own strain. "Brotherhood of Blues" is slightly more mid-tempo, but still blisters along. Panagiotis Zabourlis adds another layer of guitars along with Stravos. Bass is handled by Jim Moralis and the drum assault is taken care of by Lazaros Simitsis. For a music fan like myself, I am always thankful when a band does minimalist production. Each instrument is clear and loud with hardly any effects. This is 100 Proof rock and roll.

There are no throwaway songs on this record. "Everything You Wanted" unleashes a guitar groove that punches you right in the gut! "Southern Train" is slightly more southern rock than some of the other songs, but still retains the Super Vintage sound. The mini-guitar jams on this record almost have you wishing this band did jam-band versions of these songs.

Other standouts include the lengthy "Naked Tree" and the acoustic title track. The latter being an homage to early Led Zeppelin. The silky clean audio is perfect for a good set of headphones. Like most quality albums, this is a grower and not a show-er. In other words, the more you listen to this record, the more it will get stuck in your subconscious. The members of Super Vintage are clearly worshippers of a dying American art form. And the end result is a very satisfying motorcycle ride through some rough and tumble classic rock.