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The Sore Losers - Skydogs

 Little known outside of their Benelux stomping ground The Sore Losers have nevertheless been around long enough for Skydogs to be their fourth full-length release and fans of The Faces (yay!) and /or Stereophonics (boo!) who’re in need of a fix of something familiar should find themselves well catered for, despite the album’s cover giving the impression that what’s contained within is harder and possibly more controversial fare.

Rather like Mando Diao’s progress since their first album The Sore Losers appear to have decided to plough a less demanding furrow in the intervening years since their 2010 self-titled debut album came out. The fact there’s a Grammy winning producer involved is neither here nor there when it comes to middle-of-the-road rock of this nature. You can’t help imagining that the Tory MP who recently complained about the re-sale of Green Day tickets (a perfectly valid concern mind you) also has a Sore Losers album or two in his collection.

That’s not to say that you can’t happily tap your foot along to the likes of ‘All I Am’ (although oddly it ends rather abruptly, as if the band got bored of it themselves), there’s just nothing on offer that clubs you around the head and grabs your attention. There’s a couple of sub-Lenny Kravitz tracks which up the pace and weight a wee bit & include more exuberant vocal passages for good measure (for example final track ‘White Whale’) but musically the whole thing’s the equivalent of a Banker who maintains his own self-image as a rebel by riding a Harley at the weekend.  

Unlike Melville’s mythic, sea-dwelling mammal of that final song rebellion and exciting rock ‘n’ roll are beasts which have been successfully captured and tamed on Skydogs. There may be flying canines but they’ve no bite or bark.  

Skydogs is available from amazon.

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