AXEL RUDI PELL - Diamonds Unlocked

Axel Rudi Pell - Diamonds Unlocked

11 songs
55:32 minutes
Steamhammer / SPV


Nobody is disputing Axel Rudi Pell’s status as a guitarist, and I would even go so far to say that he is Germany’s answer to Ritchie Blackmore, but why he chose to release an album of mediocre cover version will remain a mystery to me forever. Diamonds Unlocked starts with a pompous intro that doesn’t fit the concept of the album, but then continues with Warrior, a cover version from American hard rockers Riot, a good choice to start the album, but from there it goes downhill, because Pell mostly has a go at regular rock bands that didn’t even win me over in the original versions. Artists like U2, Chris Rea and Phil Collins have always been a horror to me, and Pell can’t improve on them. Worst of all is of course this take at Michael Bolton, a musician that’s been considered a parody by every conceivable media. Even his version of Kiss’ Love Gun has no power at all. The album ends with a conciliating rendition of The Who’s Won’t Get Fooled Again, making you wish that the entire album had consisted of such energetic songs.

Unfortunately Diamonds Unlocked is a rather boring affair that never really hurts, but eventually has the same effect as a valium. I am not a big fan of Pell’s original material, but at least he’s more of a hardrocker on his previous CDs than on this lacklustre cover version compilation.

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