Rated X - Rated X

Rated X cover
Rated X
Rated X
Frontiers Music Srl
Frontiers has become a well-known breeding house for projects that in some cases become full time bands. So their president, Serafino thought that it might be a good idea putting together a band, featuring none other than, Joe Lynn Turner, the former Rainbow singer who also has so many credits to his name it’s quite impossible to list them all here, with drummer extraordinaire Carmine Appice, who seems to have drummed for absolutely everybody... (Vanilla Furde, Cactus, Rod Steward, King Cobra, Blue Murder, would not even cover half of his discography) hottly touted bassist Tony Franklin, who’s well known for his fretless (and fretted) playing and apart from Blue Murder, like Carmine he’s also worked with the likes of Roy Harper, The Firm, Jimmy Page, Paul Rodgers, David Gilmour, Kate Bush, Whitesnake (toured), and most recently with Kenny Wayne Shepherd and last but not least Karl Cochran on guitar who’s known to have collaborated with a great host of musicians from Ace Frehley, Bob Daisley, Eric Singer, to Joe, himself among others.
Two members of Blue Murder, a great guitarist and a great hard rock vocalist, one the greatest in fact that have also worked together previously (it’s only logical that they did this coupling)… on paper it looks great… listening to it, doesn’t entirely tell a different story as the band, manages to create an interesting sound that sounds like an amalgam of all the influences of all the bands these fine gentlemen have been, which should be pretty cool... but that only tells half of the story... on the twelve song album some of the songs seem to work fine, like the rocking opener “Get Back My Crown” or the pulsating yet melodic “Fire and Ice”... others like the nastier and out and out rockers “This is Who I Am” seem to be OK, while others like “Don’t Cry No More” subscribe in the more “touchy-shaking” variety of rock, you know talking more about wine, women an song... some other songs like the long winded and somewhat epic “Lhasa” would have not worked if the people involved in this project weren’t musicians of this caliber… others are a tad forgettable, but others like “You are Forgettable” an organic rock ballad, just work marvelously out of the box... Turner does his best to apply his “magic touch” anywhere he can but not all material is equally good... funnily enough there’s even a song named “Stranger in us All” that has no relation with Rainbow other than quoting their last album title (there’s also no song by that title anyway) but for some reason it seems either as a wink or a bit of a tease towards Blackmore, I suppose to do that! I just, dunno, might be just me being thoroughly silly but let that not distract you from the fact that it's actually a quite good song too.
All in all, this first eponymous album by Rated X, is quite promising, but doesn’t entirely deliver all it could, there’s more untapped potential in this project, with more selective songwriting. But this is nowhere near bad. It just misses maybe a couple of songs that would really make you go wow!