DAVID LA DUKE - Hard Rocker (SB Records)
David La Duke is one of those characters that is more than just a musician and writer, but a player in the rock 'n' roll mythology. You can't help but soak up
his love for the big guitars, roaring hook and all things unabashedly pro-air guitar.
Less a metal shredder and more of a Detroit style rumble rocker (though he's from Kentucky!), La Duke takes on guitar and vocal duties with full on adrenaline rooted in rock 'n' roll's origins. There are traces of Brownsville Station, The Nuge and KISS' "God of Thunder" on Hard Rocker. So yes, things are delicious in many respects. The opener is rather low key compared to much of the other tracks on the disc. Yet "Takin' My Chances" still holds up as catchy little rock number, leaning more towards pop than hard rock. But shame on us for doubting the album title's grandiose claim. "Right From Wrong" kicks us in the intestines with massive Robin Trower meets Nugent thunder chords, leveling all things pretentious with on giant earthquake. In fact, the production is much like Nugent's '75 selt-titled masterpiece. Meaty yet melodic but all rooted in the rock 'n' roll twang. "Rock n' Roll Fever" simply stomps and rawks like Let There Be Rock AC/DC yet is somewhat quirkier. Monstrous. "Telling Me Lies" borrows a little Elvis swing and swagger, accompanied by fluttering piano and a nice breakout chorus. It must be recognized that La Duke's material has a masterful sense of rhythm and follow through. Nothing here sounds forced. Excellent study for hard rock fans.
Brian Coles Hard Rocker 4.5 / 5 Bolts