"The Money Grind" (New Empire; 2008)

Reviewed by Metal Mark

Bassist/vocalist Willie Basse is perhaps best known for his work in L.A.-based Black Sheep back in the 1980s. The group, at times, included the likes of Slash, Paul Gilbert, James Kottak and Randy Castillo. That's an impressive alumni list considering that all of those members went on to bigger acts at some point.

This is Basse's first solo release in eight long years. This release certainly focuses on a style of metal from two decades ago as at least half of "The Money Grind" could very well have been done around 1986. The music oftimes reminds me of KISS, Dokken, Van Halen, Britny Fox and others. Basse's vocals are hit-and-miss as he handles the mid-tempo parts well but sounds way off key when he tries to extend his range.

The music is generally decent with heavy enough music and some solid production work, but there isn't much going on here that wasn't done twenty years ago. I suppose that's fine for fans of this style, but it's certainly nothing special. I think that I was expecting more after an eight year wait and from such a veteran of the genre.

There are also several tracks that really lack focus because it's almost like the band begins okay for a minute or so and then they just ramble on. The album would have been far more concise had they cut it from 14 tracks down to perhaps 10. That would have taken away the filler tracks and made "The Money Grind" a much tighter album.

For more information, check out http://www.myspace.com/williebasse.

"The Money Grind" (New Empire; 2008)

Reviewed by Mike SOS

Wheeling out a healthy dose of hard rock histrionics, Willie Basse returns from the shadows of session musicianship and studio ownership to release his new 14-track endeavor, "The Money Grind."

Formerly fronting the Los Angeles mainstay Black Sheep (whose name he fortuitously sold to the rap band from the early '90s), there's no denying that Basse's crunchy songs and powerful vocals rip it up with all of the pomp the 80s dictated, sounding at times like a cross between Y&T and Bulletboys ("Unloveable," "Don't Waste My Time").

While it's a tough call to really tell if songs like the reggae-infused "Yesterdaze" will strike a chord with fans of his target audience, there's enough material found on this disc to satisfy those who crave the big sound songs like "It's Over" pump out.

For more information, check out http://www.myspace.com/williebasse.

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

Back to CD Reviews Home

Back to RoughEdge.com Home

Copyright 2009 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 11 Jun 2018 20:14:11 -0400.