In a world gone mad, where words like ‘quarantine’ and ‘lockdown’ are part of the global lexicon, we need a heavy dose of optimism more than ever. So how appropriate then, that British rockers Blitz have returned with a brand-new album that’s absolutely rammed with feel-good, punch-the-air anthems fused this time with a harder edge than their previous work, bringing a new sense of urgency to the music.
Fight to Survive is the name of the album in question, as apt a title as any right now, and from the very get-go, it blisters! One In a Million is as heavy as it is catchy, combining a big chorus with a rolling riff, building up to a volcanic eruption of a guitar solo. Blood Brothers carries on this vibe, with melody aplenty, but also finding the time for an almost thrash-metal breakdown around the 1: 40 mark.
Waiting For A Miracle is more familiar Blitz territory, a natural successor to one of their previous bangers, their show-stopper I Believe. It’s an obvious pick for a single, all arena rock riffs and thunderous drums, alongside a chorus chant born for the live stage. It’s as Blitz as it gets, and all the better for it.
Damage Is Done follows, and it’s devastatingly good. Sounding like a cross between Kiss’ God of Thunder and an early Blitz classic, Born to Rock, its probably my favourite track from Fight to Survive, the unofficial heart-beat of the record. It begins as another raging rocker, before slowing down for a moment of reprieve, and then exploding into another of Kevin Simpson’s unstoppable solos.
Every time Blitz release another song, another album, you can hear the development. Stuart Corden’s vocals get better and more soulful with each new track. Mat Davis is more intricate and restrained with his drumming (but only when he needs to be), holding every tune together with expert skill. And Kev Simpson manages to keep the balance of straight-up, balls-to-the-wall riffs and Phil Campbell-esque solos beautifully, injecting every song with personality.
And this is Blitz’s core selling-point. Even when they’re singing about familiar hard rock tropes, like partying hard, missing someone, saying goodbye…they do it in such a way that these tunes have a life of their own, a character that is 100% pure Blitz. Look no further than Party Time, or the fist-in-the-air title track for your proof.
Towards the end of the record, we get some revamps of old Blitz classics, injecting fresh life into some early gems. 99 Ways has never sounded better, more closely resembling the bands’ live performance of the song with all the added grit. Elsewhere we get something brand-new. Breaking Out is the closest Blitz have come so far to doing a punk song. It’s one of the softer, more poppy tunes they’ve done, a step away from their usual territory, and it works! You’ll have the chorus lodged into your head long after the album finishes – much like most of the other tracks on this release.
Fight to Survive is everything you’d expect from a Blitz release, but with just a little bit more besides. Everything is ramped up a little bit more, and there are some left-field surprises to keep you on your toes. If it’s a good time you want, you owe it to yourself to get this album. Another absolute winner from one of the best underground bands on the circuit. Oh, and the album cover’s a belter too!