THE MIGHTY SWINE - LAST MAN STADING (Broad Horizon Records)
The Mighty Swine is a Classic Hard Rock/Heavy Metal act from Midwest USA (formed in late 2007 as a three piece act) featuring Mike Skimmerhorn who was active in cult US Metal band Chastain from ’84 to ’89 and from 2013 up to the present days. Mike was also a member of the mighty CJSS and Leone, he’s always been a very creditable musician as he still can be defined right now. Just check the latest output of Chastain called “Surrender To No One”, a killer US Metal output where Mike delivers the goods alongside soulmates for life, David T. Chastain and Leather Leone.
Besides Mike Skimmerhorn as lead singer/bassist, other guys in The Mighty Swine are Stacey Donahue (Ozzy Osbourne tribute band) on lead guitar, Mudvaine/Disturbed drummer Rory Faciane and Jeff Tong teamed up early 2014 as second guitar player. Due to I’m not familiar with these guys, I had to do some research on their musical background and came to the conclusion, they’re fully skilled to the bone! A little while ago, I was asked to provide the band with a review for their new album “Last Man Standing” and because of my everlasting passion and dignity for US Hard Rock and Metal music, an offer I couldn’t refuse at all!
I guess this is The Mighty Swine’s album number three and following my own heart… it’s a big one who brings the good old days of Heavy Metal back to life ! According to myself, these guys’ style of music has not much to do with the nowadays scene. They’re among us in order to show their faith in Classic Hard Rock and Heavy Metal music mainly, with of progressive touch. Opener ‘All That Is Evil’ takes me by the throat right on, US Heavy/Power Metal with a serious nod to the 80s and I’m feeling good about that. Founder Mike Skimmerhorn showcases a real good job while delivering a unique manner of vocal service… his special timbre cut through flesh and it must be said that also the rest of the musicians take me by surprise. The wisely worked out guitar riffs are strong and powerful, the solo’s are fully technical and made of shiny steel, the bass lines of Mr. Skimmerhorn still working out contagiously like he always did in the past… to keep a long story short, The Mighty Swine are nothing but a bunch of well trained soldiers armed to the teeth with outstanding skills but…
Another remarkable fact bringing satisfaction to my ears are the heavy pounding, brilliant drum actions. About that, there was a nice quote written on the info sheet as follows: “Rory does a lot of studio work recording drum tracks for literally 1000s of songs, has his own line of instructional videos out and was listed by Modern Drummer as “A drummer on the move” for his linear double bass shuffle concept. He has released albums and toured with Knorr, Biloxi, Jay Elston, and Fall from Eden. He studied under Gregg Bissonette and Guy Gelso before graduating from the Percussion Institute of Technology”.
‘Empty Shell’ feels like Savatage delivering their supreme Metal stuff used to know from the glorious “Sirens”/”The Dungeons Are Calling”/”Power Of The Night” era. By the way, listen good to the vocals of Mike, I recognize throat similarities with big Jon Oliva… what a killer song ! The title track comes out of my speakers and I’m reducing the volume of my amp to a higher level. For some reason, this track does reminds me a bit of US Power/Thrash Metal veterans Meliah Rage during their early days of existence. ‘Rite Of Passage’ would be the favourite song for all those into early Black Sabbath or Trouble. Good ol’ style Hard Rock comes along with the song ‘Thick As Thieves’ and is loaded with groovy guitars and Randy Rhoads/Zakk Wylde type of leads. ‘Vengeance Is Mine’ kicks some more old Savatage memories into my head and damn sure, I like that !. To be honest and with a lot of respect for this legendary Heavy Metal band, I’m done with Judas Priest cover songs but to those still hooked on, The Mighty Swine brings you ‘Hell Bent For Leather’. I prefer to listen to the last song ‘Pool Of Emptiness’, a sublime Hard Rock piece served with elegance by a superb band featuring excellent musicians.
Being a US Hard Rock / Metal fan myself since the late 70s, The Mighty Swine’s new album “Last Man Standing” gives me courage and strength to carry on supporting this beautiful gem as good as I can. I really had a great time listen to MR. Mike Skimmerhorn and his associates’ new cut, especially the older generation of Metalheads should consider a purchase via: http://www.themightyswine.com/, Facebookers have to hit THIS spot. I will have a conversation with Mike soon so take an eye on our Interview section later on!
My Points: 87 / 100
95+ : Outstanding, high valued albums & Classic Ones… a direct purchase is advisable !
Between 90 and 95: Surpasses the style of music, must be heard/ordered by every Metal fan
Between 80 and 89: Good in its own genre, recommended for those hooked on it
Between 70 and 79: Decent but best previewing
Between 60 and 69: Rather moderate
Between 50 and 59: Bad, substandard
50- : Rubbish