Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * * *
They say in the land of Rock ‘N’ Roll you have to change lanes once in a while, that you have to put the hazards on, put the foot down and get off the freeway, let the Interstate be a distant memory and occasionally speed along the back roads, kicking up dust and kick down the doors of the roadhouses, order a beer or two, follow it up with indiscretion and listen to the conversation on your shoulders between any angel passing by and big Ol’ Red. In the land of Rock ‘N’ Roll you got to put on the radio, tune in to The King Snake and relax in the heart of The King Snake.
The demon that whispers in the ear is perhaps more honest, it symbolises the chance to really listen hard to the truth of your own conviction, all God’s snakes, from the seller of fake medicine to the politicians who take too close a hand on affair in the business of others; Rick Springfield has contempt for them all, and each song that you tune into on this back road race across the state is one that captures the pain and suffering caused but one with the cheer of Mr. Springfield’s deeply engaging personality and attitude.
Track such as the fine and beautifully worded Jesus Was An Atheist, God Don’t Care, Suicide Manifesto, Blues For the Disillusioned, Santa Is An Anagram and the marvellous boot down on the American Cadillac trail Orpheus In The Underworld don’t just make themselves known with a billboard every so often pointing out the good times to be had, the sights to be seen and the monuments to good Blues Rock and vibrant lyrics, these are songs that resonate in a modern world.
This is sincere, yet superbly placed commentary on a world that has had the stuffing kicked out of it by the greedy, the insubstantial and the back handed grinning barons; these are The King Snake incarnate and Rick Springfield takes them to task with a devil and an angel on each broad shoulder.
The King Snake needs addressing, in the hands of Rick Springfield it is powerful, musically absorbing, and thrilling to hear. No sign of a hiss or the slither of reptile, Rick Springfield wears the invisible crown with style.
Rick Springfield’s The King Snake is released on January 26th 2018.
Ian D. Hall