CRAZY LIXX – Ruff Justice [Japanese Edition] (2017)
Swedes CRAZY LIXX will release their new studio album “Ruff Justice” on April 21, 2017, via Frontiers Music Srl, but the fortunate Asian fans already have this Japanese Edition at hand with a great bonus track.
With production by vocalist Danny Rexon and Chris Laney, “Ruff Justice” is a pure trip back to the ’80s mixing Sunset Strip styled sleazy hard rock with commercial, catchy melodic hard rock and an occasional AOR pinch.
Crazy Lixx takes you in their time machine and drops you in those wild and crazy, sexy and sleazy, days of of big hair, bullet belts, denim and leather. (Oh yeah, and all those hot chicks in spandex and six-inch stiletto heels)
The sound in “Ruff Justice” is very polished, and every song oozes with strong melodies and harmonies, the latter notable in the twin guitar riffage, yet also in Danny Rexon’s melodic voice teamed with the gang vocals. Also, rhythm and groove is at a premium here. The rhythm section lays down a solid, toe-tapping, hard rock punch. Next up is another usual suspect, some terrific guitar solos in every song.
Crazy Lixx isn’t rewriting a new book in their chosen genre, merely underlining it with broad strokes.
And they are fan-damn-stastic at it.
“Wild Child” is a solid modern hard rocker and a great opening number to the album, however, it’s not the best track here. Geez, do you remember those yellow Sony Walkman in that video??? “XIII” is more ’80s based, with a serious power chord diminishing into a verse. Bon Jovi and Def Leppard will become a theme here.
“Walk The Wire” also breaks down into subtle non-distortion verses, with a midtempo AOR melody and a catchy chorus.
On the other hand, “Shot With The Needle Of Love” is aggressive and rockin’. Song five starts out slowly despite being called “Killer” and the song itself crosses between a ballad and a hard rocker.
“Hunter Of The Heart” is a really good punchy beast with a huge groove and a blast from classic Ratt maybe. I’m loving it. Track seven “Snakes In Paradise” again wrap things into an AOR melody with great verses and harmony vocals.
The acoustic sounding “If It’s Love” is a ballad with acoustics into the mix and a Def Leppard atmosphere, which gets power in the stong chorus.
Both “Kiss Of Judas” and “Live Before I Die” are really good examples of how modern rock bands explore and interpret our beloved ’80s melodic hard rock sound.
Then the bonus track is a remix of “Walk The Wire” re-titled ’87’ and you guess why: the remix added lots of keyboards and turned the song much more AOR and it’s one of my favorites on the record.
So this Japanese edition really worth it.
“Ruff Justice” continues in the same vein of Crazy Lixx origins, but with different capabilities.
Previous New Religion and Riot Avenue were solid records, but “Ruff Justice” differentiates itself by going even more ’80s based, using harmonic vocals and melodic guitar lines throughout similar to Danger Danger, or maybe Mr. Big.
Yes, “Ruff Justice” is the best Crazy Lixx album of their career, and a contender for the ‘best of the year’ for sure.
01 – Wild Child
02 – XIII
03 – Walk The Wire
04 – Shot With A Needle Of Love
05 – Killer
06 – Hunter Of The Heart
07 – Snakes In Paradise
08 – If It’s Love
09 – Kiss Of Judas
10 – Live Before I Die
11 – Walk The Wire ’87 (Remix) [Japan bonus track]
Danny Rexon – vocals
Chrisse Olsson – guitar
Jens Lundgren – guitar
Jens Sjöholm – bass
Joél Cirera – drums
BUY IT !