Album review

Thunder : Shooting At The Sun
STC Recordings

Thunder : Shooting At The SunWhen Thunder first arrived on the scene 200 years ago, out of the ashes of Terraplane, they were hailed as the 'new Whitesnake'. Nobody asked for yet another band of posturing cock-rock poodles, but we got them anyway.
    The comparison turned out to be a bit of mistake it seems. King 'Snake David Coverdale was something of a self-confessed carnal gourmet in a rock 'n' roll styley. And, whatever the reason for it, any band that can get Steve Vai on board for one album (and a rumoured one million dollars) must have had some credibility with the paying public. Danny Bowes and Luke Morley's Thunder however were - and on the strength of this album, are - nothing more than a 'pub band plus'.
    The plus bit being that they have somehow managed to get and keep a recording contract, and have now even started their own label to release this drivel. Actually that should be a minus shouldn't it? Oh well you have to hand it to them; this sort of dogged persistence deserves some credit, if not a psychiatric referral.
    Back to the Whitesnake thing though: Were I to compare the two bands using an undergarment analogy, and I think I might be about to do this, Thunder are a pair of neatly ironed Y-fronts to Whitesnake's crotchless panties. Harsh but true.

So what of this new offering? "Hailed as a cross between their first and last albums, Shooting At The Sun sees them return very much to their classic rock roots." Well that's what the accompanying press release says. What it meant to say is Thunder were, are, and always will be derivative nonsense that only their mums could still profess to support. The thin spandex of loyalty can only be stretched so far before even old mother Morley et al give up politely waiting for their boys to find proper jobs, and tell them like it is. Oh the shame, the disappointment!
    Musically this album is proficient no-thrills rock, but even in this limited sphere it is desperately unadventurous. Lyrically, it is banal in the extreme. Take this mindless doggerel from Somebody Better Get Me A Spin Doctor: "Somebody get me a spin doctor, lying and a-cheating and a-covering up the evidence. But when the fingers start to point who's the man to clean the joint, If only he'd been with me when I got in late the other night. That's right." A-cheating? A-covering up? Clean the joint? Is this for real? Sadly it doesn't get any better.

I don't know and I don't care if people still buy Whitesnake albums, but the poor man's Whitesnake should be left on the racks to gather dust before being swept into the bargain basement along with all the other no-hopers. I'd like to argue that this album is totally irrelevant, but when there is so much really bad music around, it would be like pissing into a hurricane.
    In this light, I shouldn't berate Thunder too much because they can play and can put a song together. Its just that what they do is so uninteresting, as to be a waste of resources.

:: Tom Alford

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