Bad Disease seems an incongruous title for Vandallus’s second album when coupled with the rather distracting cover art; the person featured seems quite healthy, physically at least. That said, three of the nine tracks—“Infected”, “Heart Attacker”, and the title track—give at least a lyrical nod to ailments of some sort, and so perhaps the title has more to do with the music than the image used to sell that music. The five members of Vandallus, hailing from the home of the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame of Cleveland, Ohio, deliver a frill-free take on late seventies/early eighties Hard Rock. Despite some odd choices regarding the production—the bass and vocals are cranked up, leaving the drums and guitars buried in the mix—the songs are straight ahead Hard Rock pleasers. “Infected” opens things up with a catchy layered chorus reminiscent of early Dokken.
Vandallus are not afraid to let the music breathe, most of the songs like “Shock” and “Trash Talk’n” have spare instrumental breaks that carry listeners smoothly down sonic backroads. The bright guitars and bass-heavy mix make “Loaded” sound like an extra track from Kiss’s Dynasty or Unmasked; it’s one of the most appealing tracks on the record. Following “Loaded” is “Vandallus”, one of the faster, flashier cuts with some hints of early Tygers of Pan Tang, it’s a song worth of carrying the band name into battle. Vandallus save the best for last; the closing title cut is a blink-and-you-missed it three minute rocker that closes Bad Disease in fine fashion.
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