Gordon's Alive! are a three piece rock band from the south side of Glasgow. Formed in 2009 by Jonny and Paul, they released their debut EP 'Strange Days' before Tony joined the band in 2015. The band have toured the country, supporting the likes of Gun, Saxon, Romeo's Daughter and Mason Hill. In 2017, the band released their 4-track EP 'All These Days'.
After the emergence of some really strong new rock bands from Scotland over the last 12-18 months, I've been looking forward to this. I've heard a lot of good stuff about these guys live and I enjoyed the last EP.
'ALL THESE DAYS' starts with the title track, which immediately sets the tone; the song has a real 80s stadium rock thing going on. I'm a massive classic rock/stadium rock fan and this song is making me hop around on my chair. There is a nice clear drum beat, the vocals are rich, and the chorus is just too damn catchy for words. If I didn't know better, on hearing this, I'd assume this was a 70s or 80s American rock band. I wonder if they’ve ever slipped their own music into a covers set… There is a teeny southern rock feel, akin to Lynyrd Skynyrd. This is genuinely just enjoyable music with great musicians and melodious vocals, nothing too heavy, nothing political, no poverty or social conscience. A great opening track.
'Bleed With Me' is a little edgier, still with those anthemic vocals and drums, and, for me, the guitar steps up a level in this track; it’s more gnarly and punchy. The tone of this song is different, setting a more serious, darker mood to the previous one. And that chorus…wow - "People come and go…" is now stuck fast in my skull #earworm. These guys know how to bring us old school rock ‘n’ roll. It might not be trailblazing but it's damn good.
'Hell To Pay' is heavier and darker again, with more clipped vocals, a more aggressive sound, and lots of effing and jeffing (sorry, I'm from Yorkshire, that's cursing to you). Skilful guitar solos are a signature throughout the EP and this track is no different. If I had to pick a favourite I think this would be it. This song is more exhilarating, unpredictable and altogether louder; it has a combative punkish attitude and the lyrics are launched rather than quietly delivered. This is a driving-fast/bad-day-at-work kind of song where you can tell the world "Fuck You" - I adore this track.
The final song on the EP is 'Love or Pride’, which is more of a power ballad. The retro feel has returned, like a good drinking mate, and I'm again transported to a time where rock music still appeared in the charts. This is a great song - poignant and nuanced - but this isn't really my style. It's reliable, easy to listen to, doesn't break my concentration, while I prefer something with more tooth and claw.
One thing I love about this EP is the music doesn’t ever overcome the vocal (and vice versa). Each member of the band is strong in his own right, creating a tight sound which is somehow stronger than the sum of its parts. The songs are engaging, the performance, and production all shiny and glossy, the overall impression I'm left with is "Well done lads"; keep it coming.
All These Days
Bleed With Me
Hell To Pay
Love Or Pride
Tony McCauley - Drums
Jonny Penman - Guitars and Vocals
Paul Murray - Bass and Vocals
Home Town: Glasgow
Record Label: Unsigned
Influences: Richie Kotzen, AC/DC, Led Zeppelin, Thin Lizzy, Nuno Betttencourt, Guns n Roses, Jimi Hendrix, Deep Purple