Black Dog Barking
rating: 10 / 10
by Michael Kirk
Let’s get the usual music critic comparrison out of the way. Blablabla AC/DC… Blablablabla Rose Tattoo… and for this album, I’d also like to throw in,Blablablabla… early Def Lepard.
So with that said, let’s get into this, shall we?
I’ll admit it. I am only a casual fan of Airbourne. I’ve always respected their mission to hold the flag for hard rock in one hand and a bottle of whatever in the other. But the songs didn’t do much for me when listening to the whole album. in short.. There was a lot of filler to skip through on the first two albums.
Oh but wait my friends… That isn’t the case on Black Dog Barking. From the anthemic “Woah Oh Oh Oh” of of “Ready To Rock” all the way to the self-titled closing track, this is a fist pumping, head banging, hard rock master piece that will shake the earth, peel that paint off the walls, and will work just fine as a soundtrack for an evening of rough sex.
The band says they worked through the holidays at the end of last December to make sure this album came correct. They even enlisted producer Brian Howes [Hinder, Daughtry, Nickelback] to help tie it all together. The rythenm section is beefy and full, while Joel O’Keef’s guitar tones have a warm bite, much like those of Angus Young and Steve Clarke, while his always up to 11 vocal delivery reminds you more of a blend of Blackie Lawless and Joe Elliott, than Brian Johnson.
The subject matter covered by the band is everything you care about as a young man just itching to quit school and join a band, “”Cradle To The Grave”. A guy or girl out for the evening with the hopes of getting lucky, “Nobody Fits Me Like You”. Or a middle aged true believer tryig to stay true to themselves, even as they crank up the radio in the Family Truckster after dropping the kids off at soccer practice, “Live It Up”.
2013 has been a relatively piss poor year for rock albums. But just in time for summer, Airbourne has crash landed with 10 songs that hit your senses like a riot after a Aussie rules football match. If this quartet from Victoria call it quits after this album, they will have walked away leaving us with a career defining classic.