Pretty Maids – Kingmaker Review

I can't fathom why folks don't love this band as much as I do. If you've never given them a fair shake, ask yourself why?...

Released by: Frontiers Records

Release Date: November 4th, 2016

Genre: Hard Rock



Line Up:

Ronnie Atkins – vocals
Ken Hammer – guitars
Rene Shades – bass
Allan Tschicaja – drums
Produced by Jacob Hansen



01. When God Took A Day Off
02. Kingmaker
03. Face The World
04. Humanize Me
05. Last Beauty On Earth
06. Bull’s Eye
07. King Of The Right Here And Now
08. Heavens Little Devil
09. Civilized Monsters
10. Sickening
11. Was That What You Wanted


OK, seriously, can we finally end whatever sad joke that is being played on Pretty Maids that is preventing them from total world domination? I’ve never met any of them in real life (and only briefly spoke with Ken Hammer online once,) but from interviews and stuff they seem like some really nice guys, so barring any sort of secret bad karmic stuff going on (you know, possible connections to the Illuminati, organized crime, or closet politicians,) I just don’t understand why they have not been propelled to the outer reaches of superstardom based on not only their incredible musical abilities, but the fact that they consistently write and release some of the best melodic hard rock ever. Even what one would consider a bad album from them, is still vastly better and more interesting than anything yet another vacuous, cookie cutter Disney starlet or an average run-of-the-mill game show contestant has put out.

Hell, to some of their fans, some of their key albums are as important and iconic as anything put out by legendary names as Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, and Kurt Cobain. I have lamented about this travesty for so long that any so-called “long time readers” are probably already rolling their eyes saying aloud, “Jesus man, give it a rest!” Or more likely my like-minded brothers and sisters are raising their fists in solidarity and shouting to the world, “THE TIME IS NOW!”

For real, though, Pretty Maids new album “Kingmaker“, is such a stunning masterpiece, that is following up another stunning masterpiece in Motherland. Together for an astonishing 35 years (since their inception) and nearly as long as recording artists, with a grand total of 13 studio albums (counting Kingmaker and excluding Stripped and Louder Than Ever) they have not only created some incredible music, but dare I say helped to shape and mold the very genre they’re one of the leaders of. Few bands successfully combine a good, heavy rocking edge with the perfect amount of melody than Pretty Maids. Being able to play a brutal melodic metal track like “King of the Right Here and Now” as easily as a catchy-as-hell song like “Face the World” while never missing a step, is nothing short of awesome. Longtime band mates and collaborators Ronnie Atkins and Ken Hammer have honed their craft to near perfection, while at the same time surrounding themselves with equally talented musicians as Rene Shades on bass and Allan Tschicaja on drums.

I can’t fathom why folks don’t love this band as much as I do. If you’ve never given them a fair shake, ask yourself why? What is the main factor preventing you from giving them a shot? And if you have listened to them why aren’t all of your friends listening as well? It is time for us Pretty Maid fans to finally come together on behalf of the band and get as many people into them. Better than 95% of the bands of the same era, their name should be held in as high regard as Def Leppard, Bon Jovi, and Poison, higher if you ask me because they’ve been far more consistent and have put out better music. At any rate, Kingmaker is yet another masterful work of brilliance from this vastly overlooked and under appreciated band.


Reviewer: Chris Martin

Rating:  10/10

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