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STEELSHINE (ex King Kobra) - Steelshine (2013)


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STEELSHINE is the new band of ex- King Kobra founding member David Michael-Philips - now known under his real name Dave Henzerling - including former Adler's Appetite vocalist Seann 'Tarsha' Nicols, and drummer John Covington who also plays with Henzerling's other band Big Cock. Two years ago they released the first EP from Steelshine, and now the band has released their self-titled full length debut.

Henzerling has played in Keel, Lizzy Borden, pre-Icon, and now in Big Cock and Tunnel, but is best known for his work with King Kobra during their '80s glory days. Henzerling, who handles guitars, keyboards, percussion and bass in Steelshine had this project brewing in his head for some time, a slightly different stuff from his recent works. Steelshine is melodic American Hard Rock with nods to the eighties / early nineties style infused with a hair metal party vibe, and at places, some bluesy overtones, all delivered with a modern and updated sound. "Laughing With The Sinners" starts with a deep scream and a bluesy sharp riff. There's a fat rhythm section with a remarkable drum sound (love that snare) behind the potent 'classic rock' vocals of Seann Nicols. The guitars really screams and Henzerling (who also produces) adds some flanger mix effects making the track sound quite modern. You can't resist to a chorus like this; "Now I won't play this game, so I might not be a winner / You won't catch me crying' with the saints - I'm laughin' with the sinners". Killer song.

"Paparazzi" shows that Steelshine isn't the typical hard rock by numbers stuff. This is a cover of a Lady Gaga song (you've read it correctly) and it really works. Steelshine make this sound like a modern Led Zepp with a big groove and turning really melodic at the chorus. Next, "Kick It Around" transports us to the sweaty days of the Sunset Strip with a cocky attitude and a kick ass thrill. The disc continues offering variety on follower "Psychedelic Girl", one of the best and more original tunes of the set. It's a semi-midtempo melodic hard rocking ballad with a hair metal feel, great vocal harmonies, precise guitars and cool keyboards all over. King Kobra / Mark Free comes to mind, and I love it.




"Ain't Getting Any Younger" is the bluesy number, complete with acoustic guitars and percussions, but gets harder in the middle with effectiveness. "B.F.A." on the other hand, is a hot stomper, straight uptempo hard rocker full of fire in its 2:50 minutes. The band offers even more variation on the catchy, tongue-in-cheek "Rough & Tumble", a fun track to enjoy with a beer at hand. "Devil Moon" returns to more classic sounds in a track that pays tribute to many Classic Rock acts. Henzerling goes acoustic for the most part here even adding some mandolin here and there. Elaborated yet 'classic friendly' tune with nice atmosphere. Penultimate cut "Wrap Your Love Around Me" is pure American hair metal / melodic hard rock with a catchy rhythm, before the CD reach its end with the corker "Rock N' Roll Made A Man Out Of Me", full of classic R'NR charm driven by a monster guitar riff and adorned with surrounding vintage keyboards (Henzerling is a clever arranger). Hot track... tap your feet guys.

"Steelshine" rocks with an '80s feel all over featuring really well composed and varied (yet homogeneous) songs where Dave Henzerling demonstrates that, in addition to being a very good guitarist (and a fine keyboard & percussion player) as musician he still 'got the fire' intact. This material is classic hard & classic rock based but a twist on some tracks, all highly ear-friendly and very well produced by Dave himself between Phoenix (US) and Vancouver (Canada) studios. Even Canuck cult legends such as Marc LaFrance and Mick Dalla-Vee (The Guess Who) contributes as well.

Very Recommended.

01 - Laughing With The Sinners
02 - Paparazzi [Lady Gaga cover]
03 - Kick It Around [Explicit]
04 - Psychedelic Girl
05 - Ain't Getting Any Younger
06 - B.F.A. [Explicit]
07 - Rough & Tumble
08 - Devil Moon
09 - Wrap Your Love Around Me
10 - Rock N' Roll Made A Man Out Of Me

Seann Nicols: lead & background vocals
David Henzerling: guitars, bass, keyboards, percussion
John Covington: drums
Marc LaFrance, Mick Dalla-Vee, Steve Santos, Kris Seuberling: background vocals


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