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Bonafide – Flames

 

Bonafide – Flames

Swedish band Bonafide are celebrating their 10th anniversary in 2017, and what better way is there to launch proceedings by releasing a new album and then embarking on a 14-date UK tour?

They have set themselves a grueling target of 14 shows over two weeks all across the UK – our great island chosen by them for this tour because of the affinity they feel with our culture of beer, curry and the underground roots of rock music.

Their new album ‘Flames’ will be released on Off Yer Rocka Recordings, and is something a bit different for Bonafide, having a gospel choir from South Sweden singing on a few songs, the whole album giving off a Black Crowes kind of vibe.

The album starts with Back in Flames which sounds like a track that Airbourne would do in my opinion, and it’s a really good track with nice guitar solo and good vocals.

The second track Smoke and Fire starts with a really cool riff and the vocals are really strong. For the single track being released, they definitely made a good choice to get across the power of this album.

Power Down is another strong track with a great distinctive riff and good guitar work, and whilst it is a short track it does not suffer for it – actually instead should be longer as it is such an enjoyable song. Bottle of Jack is the next track which is also very good, the snarling gruff vocals really coming into their own and accompanying the beautiful guitars flawlessly.

Written in Stone is a fairly short track again, and probably the most calm of all ten songs on the album – it is actually a really nice track. Like it Now has vibes of Thin Lizzy with similar style vocals and an engaging guitar riff, the drums are solid throughout and although it is one of the longer tracks on the album, it is one of my favourites.

Keep a Safe Distance and Gotta Go are two awesome tracks, with the latter having an extremely distinctive riff, and an influence that I cannot quite place; but it is a cool track and gets the listener jiving, with even a bonus curse word to set things on edge. There is some more great guitar work on this track, even though it is short again at 3:16.

Flipside Groovin’ has a fantastic bluesy vibe which makes it a really entertaining song, along with the lyrics and the sound just meld perfectly as one – it is easily another favourite of mine on this album. Under Your Spell is more of the same blues sound, but actually has the slowest tempo on the album. The lyrics and vocals are just beautiful, especially when paired with the glorious gospel backing vocals from the Swedish choir I mentioned previously; and it has a stonking guitar solo to raise the hairs on the back of your neck.

In summary, Flames is a very well-made, great-sounding album; and will surely impress even the most stoic rock and roll fans with its intoxicating mix of blues and rock, combined with strong vocals and excellent instrumentation. I believe ‘Flames’ is an extremely justified celebration of Bonafide’s ten year anniversary, and I wish them all the best on their upcoming UK tour.

Niki Flynn

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