I've never understood the big deal about FIREBALL MINISTRY. The quartet is a solid rock band with a decent sense of melody, but they aren't the saviors of rock and roll. Maybe I haven't been exposed to enough of the music on previous releases (though I did recently see a strong live performance from the band on a bill with OPETH and PELICAN). Whatever the case may be, "Their Rock is Not Our Rock" follows a pretty standard formula of rolling, upbeat grooves, basic beats, and melody lines that follow a similar pattern through most of the album.This does not mean that I think the album blows ass. It just lacks punch. It's not necessarily a case of bad songwriting either. The problem is that after I've heard the gruff Danny Joe Brown (R.I.P.) vocals of James A. Rota II on the verses and the clean, melodic, sometimes Ozzy-ish singing on the choruses of tracks like "It Flies Again", "Sundown" and "Broken", I've basically heard the entire album. OK, one song is not a carbon of the other. "Two Tears" works quite well, showing an affinity for early KISS, right down to a brief Frehley-like guitar solo, "Hellspeak" has a nice melancholic bent to it, and the moments when the band breaks out of its mid-tempo groove and quickens the pace (i.e. "Save the Saved") helps too. It still tends to run together after a while and never reaches climax. The riffs aren't quite tough enough to satisfy (even the bluesy and SABBATH-like moments) and there is a distinct lack of tension-and-release dynamics. That leaves a level of tunefulness that's marginally better than average, and rarely remains etched in the psyche. I do dig FIREBALL MINISTRY's whole rock-n-roll-for-life aesthetic. It's unfortunate that none of "Their Rock is Our Rock" leaves much of a lasting impression. There is nothing to dislike, nor anything to get excited about. I can take it or leave it.
To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends). To report any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, please send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@)gmail.com with pertinent details.