Album Review
Airbourne - No Guts. No GloryAirbourne - No Guts. No Glory

Ever since their award-winning debut album, ’Runnin’ Wild’, Airbourne have been at the forefront of a much reinvigorated rock n’ roll scene. Their incredible live performances, powered as much by the band’s colossal volume levels as for frontman Joel O’Keefe’s daredevil antics, have been a large part of their appeal. Suddenly, we find metal/rock festival organisers, like Download did last year, considering the prospect of devoting a whole day to putting on old-school rock bands, and the rise and rise of Airbourne has been a large factor in that.

Often referred to as “the new (or baby) AC/DC“, the Aussie rockers haven’t really done anything spectacular to warrant such adoration. The music they play doesn’t reinvent the genre; much the opposite, it sticks very much to the classic template laid down many moons ago and nurtured by bands like AC/DC, Van Halen, Thin Lizzy and Def Leppard. They don’t sing about “politics or social injustices”, as Joel is keen to point out, choosing rather to sing about “having a good time, no matter what.” So, it’s no surprise to find that this new album simply follows on where their debut left off. If it ain’t broke, and all that…

Jagged riff-rich verses and hammering singalong choruses characterise the album with tracks like ‘No Way But The Hard Way’ and ‘Raise The Flag’ giving us a faceful of that hard livin’, hard drinkin’, hard rockin’ spirit - the latter will inevitably become a live favourite with it’s infectious chorus. ‘Blonde, Bad And Beautiful’ and ‘Armed And Dangerous’ - “I had one too many pills now I’m high on sextasy” - send the cheese-o-meter off the charts but then that‘s part of the appeal, isn‘t it?

The album has been recorded live and straight to analogue so it retains about as much of the feel of a live show as you’re going to get. It’s purely no frills, with the band going to great lengths not to get too comfortable whilst they laid it down - word is they slept in the studio so they could start recording as soon as they got up. “Ain’t no way but the hard way”, recalls Ryan O’Keefe.

It’s certainly got bite. ’Bottom Of The Well’, for instance, utilises space to turn down the pace and give Joel the opportunity to really show off his throaty, red-raw vocal to the full. Then, ‘Steel Town’, inspired apparently by the rabid working class crowds that they encountered on tour, displays not only the band’s passion for their fans, but also their love of a decent finger-mangling solo. Yep, it’s a strong, if overtly safe, album that their fans will undoubtedly lap up.


Review by John Skibeat
 Band Members
Airbourne - Band
Joel O'Keeffe
Ryan O'Keeffe
David Roads
Justin Street
 Track Listing
1.Born To Kill
2. No Way But The Hard Way
3. Blonde, Bad and Beautiful
4. Raise The Flag
5. Bottom Of The Well
6. White Line Fever
7. It Ain't Over Till It's Over
8. Steel Town
9. Chewin' The Fat
10. Get Busy Livin'
11. Armed And Dangerous
12. Overdrive
13. Back On The Bottle
 Band Related Links
Airbourne Myspace
 Review Score Code
- Top Cheese
- Brilliant
- Pretty damn good
- Ok I guess
- What Was That?