Occasionally, members of a successful band get burned out on the style of music they play with that band and embark on a side project to vent other styles of music in which they have interest.
Such is the case with The Apocalypse Blues Revue, made up of drummer Shannon Larkin and guitarist Tony Rombola of Godsmack, with vocalist Ray “Rafer John” Cerbone and bassist Brian Carpenter.
The band came about during the recording of Godsmack's 2010 opus, “The Oracle,” when Larkin and Rombola began filling time by getting into long, open jams and exploring their blues roots.
Eventually, they decided to make it official, and recorded eleven original songs and a bonus cover tune at Vibe Recording Studios in Ft. Myers, Florida.
The resulting self-titled album is a searing blues record with heavy overtones and dark lyrics that showcases the blazing guitar work of Rombola.
Kicking off with a southern-style stomper, “Evil Is As Evil Does,” the heavy blues riff sets the tone for what's to come and establishes the hard rock edge. “Junkie Hell” continues, with it's tale of addiction's demonic grip. “Devil Plays a Strat” pays homage to Charlie Daniels' “The Devil Went Down To Georgia” with a story about a guy with a Les Paul doing battle with the devil on a Stratocaster.
Eric Gales makes a guest appearance on “The Tower,” and “Blues Are Fallin' From The Sky” gets intense with off-time signatures and a searing guitar.
The album is relentlessly heavy and the guitar work is remarkable. The surprise of the record is the ending bonus track, a cover of the Doors' “When The Music's Over,” a 6-minute epic.
The Apocalypse Blues Revue never lets up, and never lets you down.