‘Prayers For The Damned Volume 1’
2016 release from Eleven Seven Music.
Nikki Sixx – Bass, keyboards, additional guitars, backing vocals. James Michael – Vocals, rhythm guitar, keyboards. D.J. Ashba – Guitar, backing vocals. Dustin Steinke – Drums, percussions.
Artist location: Los Angeles, California, USA.
4.5 out of 5 stars rating.
Reviewed by David.
- You Have Come To The Right Place.
- I’m Sick.
- Prayers For The Damned.
- Better Man.
- Can’t Stop.
- When We Were Gods.
- Belly Of The Beast.
- Everything Went To Hell.
- The Last Time (My Heart Will Hit The Ground).
- Rise Of The Melancholy Empire.
Sixx A.M. have progressively gotten better with each new album and this fourth record from the guys proves to be their absolute best and their most commercial sounding album as a whole.
I realize this is much more modern then what I usually review but good music is good music even if it doesn’t necessarily fall into the melodic rock genre that is primarily what I cover here, so occasionally I may throw in some reviews of albums that are not in the actual genre of melodic rock and hair metal. So with that being said…
Singer James Michael has a damn good voice and sounds absolutely fantastic on every song included. His vocals fit perfectly with this music and they know how to utilize his ability to make him sound the absolute best.
D.J. Ashba is a hell of a guitarist and he blazes his way through each track with a deft hand and sounds terrific throughout.
Dustin Steinke is a beast behind his drumkit and his driving beat falls in nicely with the rest of the band as they all play, and sing, their hearts out on this record.
And the man himself, Nikki Sixx, has outdone himself here. Giving us a hell of a good modern rock record that sits among the best. He sounds fantastic on his bass as always and rounds out the talented group of guys that make up this band.
This is volume 1 of a 2 part release from the band (volume 2 is yet to come) and is a near perfect record, which is an extremely rare thing for me to see in the modern rock arena (I can literally count the modern rock bands I like on one hand). The only thing holding it back for me personally is the track ‘Belly Of The Beast’ which just failed to capture me. Otherwise the album is a huge success and, as stated, the best we have heard from this band to date.
One thing I like about the band is that their lyrics are not the product of some drunken, drug induced evening of song writing, leaving us with songs about absolutely nothing, that no one can relate to lyrically. They write about real life, about real issues, and that is when music is at it’s absolute, most powerful best. When someone can listen to your music and it speaks to them, it details something they have been through, something they are going through or whatever the case may be. When someone can hear a song and say “I know exactly what they are talking about, I have been there” and the music reaches them on a far deeper level, perhaps helps them through something they are going through in their lives at that time, that is the real power of music. That is the force behind music, the thing that unites multitudes of people who have never met, brought together by a powerful song and lyric that speaks to each one on a different level. These guys write that way.
Sixx and company write with an unmistakable passion of stuff they believe in and have been through personally, a passion that has been severely lacking in modern rock music for years.
We are given an album of songs with lyrics that we have come to expect from this outfit. Lyrics about dealing with demons in your life, overcoming the shit life hands out, bettering your life and moving on to become the best version of yourself you can be. Songs about rising up for what you believe in and going against the status quo, ‘Rise’. Songs about infidelity and the hurt caused by someone you loved, ‘Everything Went To Hell’. Lyrics that are dark, personal, painful and uplifting all at the same time.
This is what the band is all about. Taking personal demons they have dealt with, putting it into words that will speak to others dealing with these issues and then writing some damn good rock ‘n’ roll music to back it, giving us a great fucking record in the process.
I absolutely love Motley Crüe and their good times party music, the epitome of hair metal. And they are certainly at the top of the hair metal/sleaze rock genre, but Sixx found his true calling in writing as a lyricist when he started Sixx A.M. I think. Giving us more than just a good times rock ‘n’ roll record he gives us strong, solid and relevant modern rock with a real message that is at the top of the genre.
Now I will be the first to criticize modern rock, it is not my scene at all, not to bad talk the musicians involved in the genre, they are no doubt all talented in their own ways, it is just not my genre personally. But, as I stated before, good music is good music, period. And these guys are delivering it in spades and doing a damn fine job of it.
Do not miss out on this one. Hands down the number one modern rock album of the year. Let’s hope that volume 2 delivers the same excellent music as this superb album.
A hard rocking, personal, heavy, uplifting and highly infectious record, this is head and shoulders above what is typically released in the modern rock genre.
You Have Come To The Right Place.
Prayers For The Damned. (The best song the band has done to date, in my opinion. Absolutely superb).
When We Were Gods.
Everything Went To Hell.