If you were to go by appearances (i.e., the CD cover and inner sleeve art work), The Sullied would be playing some pretty aggressive hardcore. Fortunately, looks are deceiving. A hard rocking quartet who add a violin to their mix of metal, blues rock, and progressive balladry, The Sullied most closely resemble a band like King’s X. They’ve got it al going for them: solid musicianship, tightly woven songs and great vocals of lead singer, Sully (not to be confused with that dude from Godsmack) who blends the best elements of King’s X vocalist Doug Pinnick (an underrated singer who’s got a serious set of pipes) with the priapic vocal stylings of David Lee Roth. I mean, the guy can really sing. Meltdown is heavy, but it’s not all cock rock attitude. “Die For You” is a gorgeous metal ballad with a sharp descending tom fill segueing chorus with verse, and making excellent use of David Ragsdale’s near-hallucinatory Roxy Music-esque violin riffs. “Flower” is a also disarmingly subtle seduction song flowing in on a rhythm borrowed from Stone Temple Pilots.
As good as the album’s first half is, the real payoff comes in the final few cuts, beginning with “The Devil’s Own” — a focused instrumental providing Eddie Garcia with a perfect forum to show off his significant drumming chops. Two of Meltdown‘s best tracks are “I Know a Fool,” a meticulously measured slow jam that builds toward a finely executed rock & roll crescendo; and “Cowboys,” a hook heavy mid-tempo rocker that has “potential chart hit” all over it. By the time The Sullied bring it all to a close with “Save My Love,” you’ll be ready to hit the repeat button. Recommended if you like: Van Halen, King’s X, Living Color, Stone Temple Pilots, Soundgarden, Kansas.
The Sullied: http://www.thesullied.com