German heavy rock band, Gun Barrel, has unleashed Damage Dancer officially on May 13, 2014 in North America and it’s something that you should check out if you’re a fan of straight ahead hard rock.

Gun Barrel came together around 1998 in Cologne, Germany and issued an EP, Back to Suicide, in 2000 which garnered some attention and led them to a record deal.  Since then they have created a five album back catalog consisting of Power-Dive (2001), Battle-Tested (2003), Bombard Your Soul (2005), Outlaw Invasion (2008) and Live at the Kabuna (2010, a live album celebrating their 10 year anniversary).  And yes, you can place some sure bets that I’ll be questing to add these releases to my already extensive music library after hearing Damage Dancer!  Plagued by lineup adjustments, guitarist Rolf Tanzius is the only original member from the Back to Suicide days and is joined by vocalist Patrick Suhl (who also lent his talents to Brace for Impact), bassist Tomcat Kintgen (who has been around since Bombard Your Soul) and drummer Toni Pinciroli has been a stalwart hidden behind the kit from Power-Dive to the present.

The album opens out with a short, less than a minute long, introduction simply listed as “Intro” on my MP3 promo copy, but appears to be officially titled “Unleashing the Hounds” according to the band’s website.  The title track, “Damage Dancer” is up next and gets the ball rolling quickly with a high energy in the fast paced rocker.  “Bashing Thru” has such a familiarity to it, but I can’t quite place the comparative song.  Definitely one of those songs that sticks with you after the listen is over and is probably my top choice here.  The rest of Damage Dancer moves along quite well in the same vein as the first two tracks with Patrick Suhl’s vocals having just the right amount of grit to them throughout the release which is peppered with groovy rhythms and short, uplifting solos containing enough riffage to satisfy.  Standout cuts for me are the aforementioned “Bashing Thru”, the peppy “Building a Monster” and the fantasy based “Ride the Dragon”.  The over six minute in length epic, “Vultures are Waiting”, is another gem not to be missed near the end of the album.

Check out some Gun Barrel with this record company promo for the song “Damage Dancer”.

The Meister

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