Album Reviews

Helix – Vagabond Bones

Released by Perris Records – 2010

Review Added March 09, 2010

Released – November 24, 2009
Running Time:
Musical Style: Metal/Hard Rock

1. Animal Inside, The (won’t be denied)
2. Go Hard Or Go Home**
3. Vagabond Bones**
4. Monday Morning Meltdown
5. When The Bitter’s Got The Better Of You**
6. Hung Over But Still Hangin’ In – (featuring Russell “Dwarf” Graham)
7. Best Mistake I Never Made
8. Make ‘Em Dance**
9. Jack It Up
Hot Tracks**

Brian Vollmer – lead vocals
Brent “The Doctor” Doerner – lead guitar
Kaleb “Duckman” Duck – lead guitar
Greg “Fritz” Hinz – drums
Daryl Gray – bass guitar

I guess if you have never heard of Helix then you have been living under a rock somewhere. The legendary Canadian Hard Rock outfit who has been around since the 70’s, returns once again with it’s 12th full length studio album and 21st album released overall. It contains performances from members of the 80’s Helix lineup: Brian Vollmer, Brent Doerner, Daryl Gray, and Greg Hinz, as well as former member and co-producer Sean Kelly. Kelly departed Helix during the production of Vagabond Bones, prompting the reunion of the 80’s band. I can’t think of many bands now a days who keep the fire burning so long and releasing solid material, usually we expect some drop off in material and quality, but here Helix sounds in fashion pure hard rocking form sounding re energized and rededicated to kicking ass again.

Lead front man and vocalist Brian Vollmer has a distant resemblance in his voice to the vocal god Bon Scott, okay wait there’s nobody who would ever sound like Bon, but the boogie top down in your face rhythm in the new record surely reminds you of some classic AC/DC staples, and the track “Go Hard or Go Home” is a fine example. The lovely rock and jive vibe in “When the Bitter’s Got The Better Of You”, fluctuates a new sounding Helix with a distinctive style, and some ripping guitar licks throughout. The punkish vibe of “Best Mistake I Never Made” adds another layer of originality and distinction to the record, once again proving that these veterans can cross and bring different influences to the forefront. More hard rocking pleasure will come via way of the arena rocker meet new age metal “Make E’m Dance” with a sick twisty guitar rhythm.

Suppose you been around for over 25 years making music, you would think you grow tired and bored and not really feeling the music anymore? WRONG, Helix comes back stronger then ever with a mix bag of different treats for all fans worldwide. With plenty of experience and talent, the guys manage to update their sound but keep the backbone of their music intact, something that very few bands can manage to do especially after being in the scene for such a long time. Nice job by Perris Records for this one, all fans of some cool sounding Hard Rock should pick this one up, is something different for you, not your typical melodic rock stuff. Helix proves that their renegade sound is still very much alive.

Written by Denys

Ratings Denys  8/10

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