Overall Score: 6/10 Consistency: 4/10 Riffs: 7/10 Stand Out Tracks: 7/10 Pros: Judas | Riffs | When they get it right, it's great Cons: Overproduced | plodding and forgettable in places
Fozzy are one of those bands who over the last decade or so have straddled the fence between hard rock and metal very effectively. With The Duke, Rich Ward and Chris Jericho as the co-captains of the band, they’ve come out with some great singles and a couple of really great albums (and several more “good” ones) over the course of their existence. Where does Judas sit in the Fozzy arsenal?
The album comes roaring out of the traps with the title track of Judas, which may well be the finest song Fozzy have written in many years, or indeed perhaps of their whole career. It’s everything you could want from a Fozzy track; Catchy, a hugely memorable main riff, a great vocal performance from Chris and a chorus the size of an ocean liner.
Judas (the track) isn’t the only good thing on offer here. Burn Me Out is a groove filled anthem a little reminiscent of previous Fozzy hit Lights Go Out. Capsized’s main riff is an instant earworm, while the album closing Wolves At Bay is full on balls out metal, with Frank Fontsere thundering behind the drums while Rich Ward and Billy Grey take turns shredding at will to very enjoyable results.
Unfortunately, for every really enjoyable song, there’s another that just doesn’t work. Drinking With Jesus (currently dominating the airwaves at rock radio) has some great riffs, but the lyrics are cringeworthy at best. Then there are a cluster of songs such as Weight Of The World, Wordsworth Way and Running With The Bulls that are almost indiscernable from each other; generic, plodding and horribly overproduced with far too many vocal effects at work being applied to Chris’ voice (for more examples of this, see As Lions).
All in all, a real mixed bag this time out for Fozzy. There’s enough here to keep the band ticking over nicely, but the hint of a truly great album that came with the promise of the title track sadly wasn’t followed through on.
Fozzy’s Judas is out now on Century Media Records.