A New Revenge - Enemies & Lovers

A New Revenge Enemies & Lovers cover
A New Revenge
Enemies & Lovers
Golden Robot Records
Tim “Ripper” Owens has gotten himself in some hot water with fans recently. His admission that he keeps putting out musical projects, just to make a living (with the quality gauge – being all over the place over releases) is not exactly the nicest thing to admit to, but at least he’s not trying to romanticize or sugar coat things for fans.
The third album in the past few months to drop, involving Tim, after the somewhat misguided metallic three pronged attack of the Three Tremors eponymous offering, the very mediocre and by the numbers Spirits Of Fire project that he did with Savatage guitarist Chris Caffery, “Enemies & Lovers” is actually a pretty decent offering in which however Owens is completely miscast.
His “classic” metallic and raspy voice, even when he sings “normally”, is hardly the right match for the punky, glam modernist mess that the band presents in their debut offering that sounds like the illegitimate lovechild between Foo Fighters and (enter a generic 90s “alt/rock” band here) try Nickelback, or Three Day Grace. The band that comprises of such other nomadic metallic luminaries as Keri Kelli on guitars (Slash’s Snake Pit, Alice Cooper, Vince Neil Band), Rudy Sarzo on bass (Ozzy Osbourne, Dio, Whitesnake) and James Kottak on drums (Scorpions, Warrant, Kingdom Come) tries valiantly to come up with the goods and it does, offer a not half as bad, set of tunes on which however Ripper feels just like the wrong choice of a singer. His performances are fine, but the whole tone of his voice doesn’t bode to well. Oil and water don’t mix… simple as that.
Which is a shame, because it’s both a waste of a nice pop-rock album, as well as Ripper’s considerable singing talents in a project that doesn’t quite manage to get off the runaway.
“The Distance” is a melodic and very modern son, that really does set the tone only for “The Way” to change things to include a chorus with far more melodic sensibilities. Things go even more college rock in “Never Let You Go” and “Glorious”. Solos where ever they exist are simple as hell and one could even question them being there at all.
“The Eyes” kicks some energy back into the album with a bleaker and grungier, almost metallic song that even let’s Ripper rip it out a bit (excuse the pun), with cool verses and a nice chorus.
“Fallen” sounds like the aural abortion between an audiage-a-trois that would feature random members of LA Guns, Billy Idol and Marylin Manson…
“Only the Pretty Ones” is actually a nice enough song that doesn’t try to hide it’s affections for Alice Cooper’s body of work – heck KK – was even in his employ. Pretty good.
“Enemies and Lovers” is another half decent popier song with a riff that wouldn’t feel out of place in one of Ole’s Black Eyes albums.
“Here’s to Us” is a kinda lame “anthemic” song that feels like a mix between Blink 182 and Ripper’s solo, with actually a nifty idea for a lead that remains underdeveloped. Overall not too impressive.
I love the riff of “Scars” and some of the melodic lines. Parts of it, have that “AC” touch/sound, but it does deviate and develop quite differently going into its solo and beyond.
“Killing You”, that closes the album, goes back into that more modern sound of the albums earlier songs, a mix between old and new styles, with certain charms, but I dunno if it’s more Alice Cooper or more Slipknot with clean vocals. You get my “confusion”.
A fairly “well” put together album of modern rock, with a great singer that however has cut his teeth in classic metal and as such he sounds a bit out of place on this. Too bad that the better album Ripper got involved in would have been better off without him and not due to a fault with his performance, but purely on stylistic differences.