Recent Reviews

April 2021

March 2021

February 2021

[ More Music Reviews ]


Black Diamonds: No-Tell Hotel
Black Diamonds - No-Tell Hotel Album Art

Black Diamonds: No-Tell Hotel

Melodic Hard Rock
3.5/5.0

No-Tell Hotel marks the return of veteran Swiss rockers, Black Diamonds. Though the quartet has been absent from the studio since 2017's Once Upon A Time, the band has been busy. In support of the album, Black Diamonds appeared at many festivals including Bang Your Head, Rock The Ring, and the H.E.A.T. festival. Also, they participated in Swiss railroad company SSB's "Prices Like Back Then" advertising campaign. Additionally, they appeared in the Swiss reality show, Pimp It Or Kick It, wherein the band had 24 hours to fix up their tour bus or dump it. Now Black Diamonds returns with their long-awaited fourth long-player, No-Tell Hotel, featuring new guitarist Chris Johnson.

Black Diamonds  - Click For Larger Image

Black Diamonds

No-Tell Hotel finds Black Diamonds once more revisiting their classic rock roots, more specifically the melodic hard rock and metal that made the Eighties Sunset Strip sleaze famous. As said elsewhere, think Bon Jovi, et al, of yesteryear, or more currently Crazy Lixx, Brother Firetribe, or their Swiss peers, Gotthard. The faithful elements of the genre are in play: guitar harmony, blazing guitar solos, and a steady rock groove from the rhythm section, with all these wrapped in abundance of melody. The wild card is vocalist Mich, who can have a raw and raspy, assertive voice, even within the heavy ballads such as Lonesome Road or Hand In Hand.

Otherwise you will find some tight and fine melodic hard rock with Evil Twin, Reaching For The Stars, or the title track, No-Tell Hotel. Alternatively, Black Diamonds gets faster, maybe a bit heavier, with Forever Wild and The Island. Perhaps the most tame song on the album is the tad softer ballad Anytime with, again, Mich taking his raw and raspy voice way beyond Bryan Adams. But the most interesting song might be the closing number Outlaw, wherein Black Diamonds works in an American Western musical motif, like putting Italian spaghetti western composer Ennio Morricone's style into their classic hard rock. If I found any drawbacks, there were two: the album could have been shaved of two or three songs for a more compact and engaging recording; and, after several songs, I found the raw and raspy vocals becoming an irritant. Nevertheless, with No-Tell Hotel Black Diamonds once more delivers a contemporary interpretation of classic Eighties melodic hard rock in the LA sleaze tradition.




CraigHartranft.net - New fiction, crime fiction by Craig Hartranft

The Bottom Line

With No-Tell Hotel Black Diamonds once more delivers a contemporary interpretation of classic Eighties melodic hard rock in the LA sleaze tradition.

Find A Review

Alphabetical Index

a b c d e f g h i j
k l m n o p q r s t
u v w x y z #
Album of the Week
Read the Read the Feanor: Rise Of The Chosen One Album Review

The last we heard from Argentine's Feanor was 2016's We Are Heavy Metal, wherein the band introduced us to a new vocalist, Sven D'Anna from Wizard. D'Anna returns for the new album, Rise Of The ... [ Read More ]

March 2021 Stats
  • Users: 5,851
  • New Users: 4,916
  • Sessions: 13,119
  • Pageviews: 52,958
  • Source: Google Analytics