Sunday, April 4, 2010

Review: Giant "Promise Land"

I was so looking forward to the long-awaited new release from melodic rock outfit, Giant. The band consisted of the unbelievably talented Huff brothers - Dann Huff on lead vocals and guitar, and David Huff on drums. Giant released what many consider to now be a pair of classics in the genre of melodic hard rock: "Last of the Runaways" in 1989 and "Time To Burn" in 1992. We last heard from the band in 2001 with the release of "III", which was a solid effort but failed to capture the magic of the younger Giant.

These days, Dann Huff is too busy for Giant, being one of the most wanted session players and producers in the business (for good reason - the guy is amazing). So David Huff recruited Terry Brock (Strangeways, Seventh Key) to take the vocal helm for Giant's new release, "Promise Land". Additionally, John Roth (Winger) has taken over on guitars and original member Mike Brignardello still plays the bass. It should be mentioned that while he is not in the official line-up, Dann Huff did co-write several of the songs and does some guest spots on "Promise Land".

Unfortunately, "Promise Land" does not live up to its title and comes off as a mere shadow of the mighty Giant of long ago. Brock is a fine vocalist and has some stellar moments on this CD, but the distinctive vocal sound that makes Giant Giant for me is noticeably gone. Too many of the tracks just wander aimlessly for far two long, devoid of any hint of the fat grooves, catchy melodies, or stunning harmonies that fans have come to expect from a Giant record. Only a handful of tracks remotely caught my attention: "Two Worlds", "I'll Wait For You", and "Through My Eyes", which has a glimmer of the power ballad glory that gave Giant their biggest radio hit. As for the Giant I used to know and love - guess I'll see you in my dreams.

iPOD-worthy: 6, 8, 9

Giant - Official site.

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