Online since August 2002

Intriguing, but all over the map

Reviewed January 2008

Kiss or Kill
Kiss or Kill
By EndeverafteR

Razor & Tie Records: 2007

To hear sound clips or learn more about this release, Turbula recommends viewing its Amazon.com entry.

Los Angeles' EndeverafteR combines campy glam rock with the hard-driving pop metal of the mid-'80s for a sound that's interesting, if never quite consistent on their new CD, "Kiss or Kill."

As lead singer and lead guitarist, Michael Grant is pretty much the face of EndeverafteR. He plays guitar with utter abandon and exuberance, with the kind of fast runs and fancy tricks right out of the '80s metal scene. As a singer, he possesses a nice flair for the dramatic and possesses more than a little David Lee Roth-style swagger.

Add it all up, and you should have something like a modern incarnation of Kiss.

But after the opening rockers "I Wanna Be Your Man" and "Baby Baby Baby," which promise something very special from this release, the band slips into some ballads that just kill the buzz. "Next Best Thing" sounds more like April Wine than Crüe, "All Night" has a kind of REO Speedwagon feel to it. Which would be okay, if the band hadn't already set up some very different expectations with the opening tracks (not to mention the packaging).

There is some good music here, some that approaches great, but without some kind of cohesive vision it just doesn't hold together over the course of the album.

Review by Jim Trageser. Jim is a writer and editor living in Escondido, Calif., and was a contributor to the "Grove Press Guide to Blues on CD" (1993) and "The Routledge Encyclopedia of the Blues" (2005).

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