John Diva And The Rockets Of Love - Mama Said Rock Is Dead

DaveTDaveT Buenos Aires, Argentina
edited July 31 in year-2019

The self proclaimed Hair Metal sensation from California, formed circa 2012 around the pipes and looks of lead singer John Diva, are actually a German band that fully embrace the Glam Metal looks and attitude.

John Diva And The Rockets Of Love - Mama Said Rock Is Dead
ARTIST: John Diva and the Rockets Of Love
ALBUM: Mama Said Rock Is Dead
LABEL: Steamhammer
SERIAL: 288051 (2xLP), 288052 (CD)
YEAR: 2019

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: Germany Flag
LINEUP: John Diva - vocals * J.J. Love - guitar * Snake Rocket - guitar * Remmie Martin - bass * Lee Stingray Jr. - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Whiplash * 02 Lolita * 03 Rock 'n 'Roll Heaven * 04 Wild Life * 05 Blinded * 06 Dance Dirty * 07 Just A Night Away * 08 Fire Eyes * 09 Get It On * 10 Long Legs In Leggings * 11 Toxic * 12 Rocket Of Love

RATING: Score=85%
WEBLINKS:Official Website | FB Page

Background

The self proclaimed Hair Metal sensation from California, formed circa 2012 around the pipes and looks of lead singer John Diva, are actually a German band that fully embrace the Glam Metal looks and attitude, and their live shows even include a group of dancers called Glamrock Cheerleader.

The guys played Wacken Open Air three times in 2014, 2015 and 2018 respectively. Their setlist consisted of well known classics originally by the likes of Kiss, Van Halen, Scorpions, Bon Jovi, Whitesnake, Motley Crue, Guns N' Roses and Europe among others.

Following the 2017 release of 'Live At Wacken', culled from performances at the festival, on February 8th 2019 they released their first full album of original compositions.

The Songs

Produced by Michael Voss (Mad Max, Casanova), Chris von Rohr (Krokus, Gotthard) also acted as creative supervisor. And they achieved a balanced sound, very clear on the drums, guitar and vocal tracks.

Everything here ties back to the good ol' days of the mid to late 80's hard rock. Obvious comparisons to a band like Steel Panther can be made. However these guys are less OTT, their lyrics are toned down and overall it seems like they take themselves slightly more seriously. Diva's main vocal influence appears to be Mr. Voss to these ears.

'Whiplash' opens with a Crue's 'Dr. Feelgood' album-era feel to the guitars and high energy. First single 'Lolita' is like we're back into 1985, a la Van Halen's 'Panama'-meets-Ratt, an extremely catchy tune and a vintage funny video as well.

The chord progression in 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven' is from the 'Sweet Home Alabama' mold, and the song itself is a Skynyrd-meets-Collective Soul kind of a modern southern rock influenced melody mixed with bits of Kid Rock and a strong chorus. As you may guess, it's sometimes easy to identify the band's influences. And this is OK with me as long as there's quality, and that's the case here.

But I need to mention that the shadows of Whitesnake's 'Give Me All Your Love', Bon Jovi's 'You Give Love A Bad Name' and Alice Cooper's 'Poison' are all over 'Wild Life', 'Blinded' and 'Toxic', respectively.

In that sense, the spirited rocker 'Dance Dirty' got me to stomp my feet while I was evoking the likes of both 'Rock Of Ages' and 'Let's Get Rocked' from the Lepps. And the pleasing ballad 'Just A Night Away' borrows from Cinderella's 'Nobody's Fool' arpeggios.

The almost military drum pace of 'Fire Eyes' is refreshing, and 'Get It On' sounds like the Rolling Stones successfully going Glam Metal via a rewriting of 'Let's Spend The Night Together', great stuff here. 'Long Legs In Leggings' and 'Rocket Of Love' are more than likely influenced by Chris von Rohr's creative input.

The first is the kind of classic 80's hard rock that either AC/DC, Kiss, Krokus or Cinderella might have written in an inspired day. The second closes the album in a style that blends Krokus-like guitars with Def Leppard-sized vocals.

In Summary

I got hooked on this album upon first listen. The songwriting, the sober arrangements and the performances, all reflect a genuine love of the Glam Metal genre by the band. I only hope they can perfect all that's hinted at here in their following releases and develop a little more personality. But for now, this is what you need for your party-times 80's Metal needs in 2019.

Video

Lolita


Rock N' Roll Heaven


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