Robot Lords Of Tokyo – Robot Lords Of Tokyo

The revitalization of traditional heavy metal is a wonderful thing. Over the past few years, we’ve seen more and more bands playing 70’s style heavy metal without any modern trimmings, and I’m definitely a happy little metalhead because of this. While it never fully departed, there was a long, long period where one would have to search rather deeply for their trad fix. But with the quickly growing popularity of artists such as The Sword, it appears that we might be experiencing a new wave of NWOBHM-style material to make us bring out or denim jackets and leather pants.

Robot Lords Of Tokyo, a Columbus, Ohio based band, is a member of this movement. Designed similarly to Dave Grohl’s well-known Probot project, the band consists of the core duo of Rick Ritzler and Paul Jones alongside a long list of guest musicians contributing to each song. Their debut self-titled LP is a solid album of traditional heavy metal/hard rock that will please any fan of either style greatly. This album is pure worship of Judas Priest, AC/DC, and numerous other heshers and rockers throughout history, and the music is a great tribute to these legends. It’s simple, catchy, heavy, and is just the thing for when you’re in the mood to rock out to something oldschool.

And this is definitely oldschool. There’s no tremolo picking or double bass to be found here: only the traditional heavy metal that we all know and love. The riffing is meaty and substantial, with an excellent rock groove to it (all the riffing as well as the vocals on ‘Belly Full Of Greed’ reminds me a lot of The Sword, only better) and little filler. Robot Lords Of Tokyo originally started out as a cover band, and this tradition is carried on to the LP; covers of Motörhead’s ‘Iron Fist’ and Mötley Crüe’s ‘Knock ‘Em Dead Kid’ are present, and probably the best two tracks on the album, particularly with the death-style vocal delivery that gives both tracks an extra bite.

It wouldn’t be off the mark to say that the material here is a bit skimpy, however. If you remove the covers and small instrumental guitar solo tracks, you’re left with only five tracks, or about 21 minutes of original music. Even with those tracks, the LP still weighs in at a somewhat light 29 minutes. Perhaps a couple more tracks of original material could have padded it out a bit more, though as it stands, the material present is quite good. As such, though, this CD feels a bit more like a demonstration or compilation than it does a full-fledged album. This is sort of a pity; more tracks that are as good as ‘Mother Mary’ would be a great addition.

As it stands, though, Robot Lords Of Tokyo have released a solid, if not incredible, CD. While a bit on the short side, it’s definitely an album to check out for any and all fans of traditional heavy metal/hard rock. Those of you out there that love the oldschool most certainly won’t be displeased.


~ by noktorn on March 23, 2007.

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