Lynch Mob – Smoke and Mirrors (2009, Frontiers Records – German Import)
1. “21st Century Man” … 4:55
2. “Smoke and Mirrors” … 5:00
3. “Lucky Man” … 4:29
4. “My Kind of Healer” … 3:33
5. “Time Keepers” … 6:54
6. “Revolution Heroes” … 4:01
7. “Let The Music Be Your Master” … 6:19
8. “The Facist” … 4:10
9. “Where Do You Sleep At Night” … 3:50
10. “Madly Backwards” … 4:12
11. “We Will Remain” … 4:37
12. “Before I Close My Eyes” … 4:43
13. “Mansions In The Sky” … 4:19
Oni Logan – Lead Vocals
George Lynch – Guitars
Marco Mendoza – Bass, Backing Vocals
Scot Coogan – Drums, Backing Vocals
Producer: Lynch Mob, Bob Kulick, Brett Chassen
After only hearing Lynch Mob’s debut Wicked Sensation and read so many negatives about the later experimental George Lynch/Lynch Mob albums, I wasn’t sure what to expect from this one. I was thinking it would probably be a less rocking, more melodic affair, but I still expected to hear some fiery George Lynch solos.
Well, I can say that album is not as chest-thumping as Wicked Sensation (an album that was pretty much a full-force “hair metal” release), but it is no soft AOR album either. In fact, what the returning Lynch Mob brings us is a solid bluesy melodic hard rock album where George is decidedly a band member and not the band himself. Even Oni Logan’s voice has changed. Whether by choice or by time, he sounds richer and deeper and doesn’t wail as he did on the band’s debut. His voice definitely suits the bluesier sound of this album.
I wasn’t immediately into this album, it’s a definite grower. Nothing jumped out and grabbed me like some songs on Wicked Sensation did and Smoke and Mirrors can’t compare to it, but this is still a very good release for fans of Lynch Mob and melodic rock in general. The opener “21st Century Man” is a great way to kick things off because it almost sounds like the Lynch Mob of old and “Smoke and Mirrors” is a really bluesy rocker that reminds me a lot of Bad Company (Logan especially sounds like he’s doing his best Paul Rodgers). Those two songs would be my favorites.
This is only Oni Logan’s seconding outing with Lynch Mob. After Wicked Sensation, he was replaced by Robert Mason (now in Big Cock and Warrant). While Marco Mendoza (Blue Murder/Whitesnake/Ted Nugent) and Scot Coogan (Brides of Destruction) are new to the group, the original Lynch Mob line-up tried to reunite a few years ago, but they didn’t get past the writing stage and Robert Mason stepped in again.
This album supposedly was released in the U.S., but I had to go through CDUniverse.com and order the German import (which was available on their site the day the U.S. version was released) for about $14. Everything is printed in English, but what’s really funny is when I put the CD into my computer to play, Windows Media Player lists the album and song titles in what I assume to be Japanese. I gotta keep the track list on hand for this one! There is no difference between any of the imports or the U.S. version. They all feature the same “bonus track” – “Mansions In The Sky”. So again, is it really a “bonus”?
Highlights: “21st Century Man”, “Smoke and Mirrors”, “My Kind of Healer”, “Time Keepers”, “The Facist”, “Where Do You Sleep At Night”, “Mansions In The Sky”