Bad Bones – Hasta El Final! (Rockshots Records)Wednesday, 15th March 2023
Italian trio Bad Bones have packed a ton of adventures over the course of their sixteen-year plus career. Including a move to Los Angeles, California for 2009-10, major festival appearances in the USA/Europe, plus prime support slots for Steel Panther, Entombed, Hardcore Superstar, and Gotthard to name but a few. Hasta El Final! is the sixth studio album for the group – a musical stew of sorts with bluesy hard rock/metal at the foundation, along with a healthy mix of punk or classic rock just to stir up your senses in eight hard hitting, focused tracks.
Kicking off the record in a NWOBHM anthemic fashion for “Bandits”, you can feel the stunted guitar lines soon give way to a Motörhead meets early Iron Maiden bass/drum charge, the desperation in the voice of guitarist Mekk Borra dripping in the verses while he wields an endearing lead break full of circular melodic movements. In a three-piece all moving parts better be capable at the ready to take command in the main hook/transition duties – and that’s the case even in a pop-punk meets progressive way for “Wanderers & Saints” as bassist Steve Balocco belts out some fabulous riffs a la influencers such as Duff McKagan or Steve Harris. The dirty grooves with cowbell support from drummer Lele Balocco cement “Sand On My Teeth” as a second half pleaser while the follow-up “Libertad” contains a lot of those Sunset Strip, sunny guitar parts beyond an uplifting chorus that energizes any classic hard rock follower even when struggling to get through a stressful day. Creating jumpy songs with ideal dynamic variation, you get the sense the band can go down a storm just as easily in front of a Whitesnake audience as they could say AC/DC, Iron Maiden, or Hardcore Superstar.
Sometimes people need the back to basic purity of a trio like Bad Bones content to crank things up, sit on that main hook/groove, and drive on to the next track. Hasta El Final! gets to the heart of the matter in under thirty minutes – ideal in this fast-paced world.