The mighty Skid Row are back with a vengeance in 2022. It seems the lockdown had some serious effects on these guys, and it was for the better. In February of 2022 the band announced they would be releasing their sixth album called The Gang’s All Here. The album is the first to feature the newly acquired vocalist Erik Grönwall after the departure of ZP Theart. Grönwall’s resume is long to say the least. In 2009 he won “Swedish Idol” and became one of the premiere singers in the rock and metal world. It wasn’t long after in 2010 he was recruited by Swedish legends H.E.A.T. as their singer providing the band with amazing vocals for close to ten years. He officially joined Skid Row in March of 2022.
The roots of Skid Row go back to the late 80’s and their self titled breakout album that featured “Youth Gone Wild” and “18 and Life.” It was their sophomore release Slave to the Grind that was a favorite of mine then and still is today. Vocalist Sebastian Bach was like no other back then. He looked like a teen model with the attitude of Johnny Rotten of the Sex Pistols and a voice comparable to Axl Rose. The band made history as they tore the mainstream metal scene apart.
That was then and this is now. Grönwall’s recent addition to the band has turned it back into a raging inferno.
The Gang’s All Here starts with “Hell Or High Water.” It is only a few seconds into it that we hear the impact of Grönwall. The guitar riff is similar to that of “Creepshow” or even a little “Monkey Business.” “The Gang’s All Here” starts off with a classic bass riff from Rachel Bolan. The song comes out of the verse with a great and catchy chorus.
“Not Dead Yet” reintroduces us to the punk roots of Skid Row. The frantic beat and raunchy guitars pair perfectly with Grönwall’s perfect vocal performance. “Time Bomb” slows down the beat to a more melodic beat and a “Tic, Tic, Tic, Tic, Boom” throughout the song. “Resurrected” throws out some catchy guitar riffs by Scotti Hill and Dave “The Snake” Sabo. The song looks to be autobiographical manifestation as 2022 is looking to be a huge year for Skid Row.
One of my favorite songs on The Gang’s All Here is “Nowhere Fast.” The song has some serious riffing and is probably one of the heaviest on the album. Up next is a track with a classic Skid Row sound “When The Lights Come On.” This song includes some Bach-like laughs and bass lines that bring back memories of days past. Be sure to check this song out because you will have it on repeat, I can assure you. “Tear It Down” is a sing-a-long classic that will play well live. The backing vocals in the song all but invite listener participation.
Every Skid Row album needs a power ballad and “October’s Song” is just that. It might not be “18 and Life” but it has a place on this brilliant comeback album. If there was a perfect song to end this album it has to be “World On Fire.” The song questions our treatment of Mother Earth. The track’s frenzied beat and guitars give the album a perfect ending along with some serious questions that need answering.
The Gang’s All Here might just be the 2022 comeback album of the year. Skid Row has had such a storied past full of ups and downs but this line-up sees the band breaking new ground. The addition of Grönwall on vocals was the perfect move to bring back the vibe of the band that fans have all been waiting for.
Check out Skid Row’s The Gang’s All Here – Available October 14, 2022 via earMUSIC.
Skid Row is:
Erik Grönwall – Vocals
Snake Sabo – Guitars
Scotti Hill – Guitars
Rachel Bolan – Bass
Rob Hammersmith – Drums