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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars JAKE IS BACK, BETTER THAN EVER
Great cd and great return of Jake E Lee. Could not wait for this to be released, so I ordered this import with an extra acoustic version of Feeder which I like very much. Maybe more than the regular version with Robin Zander on vocals. Deceived and Feeder are both great songs and most have probably already heard them. Besides them songs, Fall from the Sky, Wasted and...
Published 6 months ago by P. A. Reese

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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Jake is back and as good as ever... vocals, not so much!
I've listened to this pretty much non-stop since I downloaded it. Musically, this is as good as anything Jake E Lee has done is the past. Unlike Badlands, this is more of a metal recording that serves as more of a mix between his Ozzy and Lee/Lion days. You get the signature Jake scratch sound, killer rhythms, killer solos, killer time-changes, etc. What you also get...
Published 5 months ago by TC68Bird


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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars JAKE IS BACK, BETTER THAN EVER, January 12, 2014
This review is from: Red Dragon Cartel (Audio CD)
Great cd and great return of Jake E Lee. Could not wait for this to be released, so I ordered this import with an extra acoustic version of Feeder which I like very much. Maybe more than the regular version with Robin Zander on vocals. Deceived and Feeder are both great songs and most have probably already heard them. Besides them songs, Fall from the Sky, Wasted and Redeem Me are my favorites tunes. Great solo break on Fall from the Sky. Good to hear Paul Dianno on Wasted. I liked his style a lot when he was with Maiden. I think people will find a little bit of everything on this release. Some familiar and some not. Jake in Ozzy, is what inspired me to learn how to play guitar and him in Badlands is by far my favorite today. The sad thing with Badlands was the timing of their release. The funny thing is, if it was released today it would have been more relevant and better received. There is no denying Badlands as a heavyweight in the rock circuit. RDC, I am sure will be just that as well. Will also be checking out the Best Buy version with the extra track American Dream. Jake has got some great guys backing him and I am glad he has returned. This is chock full of Jake's great style of playing and sure to please the masses. Hope the band makes it to my area.
Oh, and there is also a tune that Jake plays on piano, the first song he ever wrote, which is a great listen as well.

So I just got the Best Buy version, and the bonus track American Dream is probably close to being up there with my favorite tunes on this release.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Jake is back and as good as ever... vocals, not so much!, January 28, 2014
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This review is from: Red Dragon Cartel (Audio CD)
I've listened to this pretty much non-stop since I downloaded it. Musically, this is as good as anything Jake E Lee has done is the past. Unlike Badlands, this is more of a metal recording that serves as more of a mix between his Ozzy and Lee/Lion days. You get the signature Jake scratch sound, killer rhythms, killer solos, killer time-changes, etc. What you also get is Jakes affinity for Mandy Lion-like singers... what's the deal with that? Darren Smith is ok, but he sounds like the he's trying to sing bigger than his voice on the higher stuff, splitting time between Mandy Lion-like & Ozzy vocals and phrasing... I'm just not a big fan of of Lion and there's really only enough room in the world for one Ozzy! Sass Jordan ( and Maria Bring (Big Mouth) REALLY rock on their tracks! Would have liked to hear more with them. Robin Zander was also good on another very Ozzy sounding track vocally. If you're a fan of Jake, I'd recommend it, but be warned if you're a fan of great vocals... Darren Smith just doesn't compare in any way to Ray Gillen. I could easily see giving this a 4 or 5 star rating if the vocals were better.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Do not ignore this, January 28, 2014
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This review is from: Red Dragon Cartel (MP3 Music)
I agree with TC68bird's review about 98% on this - in fact I almost didn't buy this when I listened to the samples because the vocals from the main lead singer are not great - but one listen to the full songs and I'm blown away. The guitar work is so F#@ing nasty, I had to go four stars. Better vocals would have easily been a 5. Thank Christ that guy doesn't sing on all the tracks - the ones sung by the girls and Robin Zander elevate the songs by miles. I will say, the main singer does grow on me and becomes tolerable, after a few listens. But back to Jake - I think this is the best guitar work he's ever done. He did some great stuff with Ozzy and Badlands, but this stuff is a cut above. Filthy, digging riffs, that don't sound the least bit dated or retro. Jake has a very unique ability to both come up with a great groove and riff, and morph the riff into what becomes almost mini-solos. The songs sound as unique and fresh as anything I've heard from any recent band of 20-something, Metallica wannbes, and every single one of them should buy this and burn out the batteries on their iphones listening to it.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars FIVE STARS FOR JAKE E. LEE!, January 29, 2014
This review is from: Red Dragon Cartel (Audio CD)
Jake is back with a vengeance and it feels sooooooo good to hear his entirely unique and distinctive sound once again! If you're a long-time fan, this album does not disappoint. It should also capture some new fans. Like another reviewer put it perfectly, the grooves are "nasty" and "filthy and digging", in true Jake E. Lee fashion. To add two more words that describes Jake's playing here - as in everything else he's ever done - raw and sexy!

It's unfortunate that some people are unhappy about Darren Smith's vocals, but it's easy to understand why Jake chose him. He has a perfect voice for this style of music and he's really *not* a bad singer. He is no Ray Gillen, but we shouldn't expect him to be - Ray was one of the greatest rock vocalists of all time. Darren deserves a fair chance though. At the very least, let's trust Jake's artistic vision here - he chose his singer for a reason.

The many guest vocalists on this release sound great, too. But it's Jakey who really shines here. Track after track, he rips some of the meanest rhythms and solos he's ever done. This album is definitely more metal and hard rock than it is blues. I think that was smart on Jake's part - this can in no way be compared to Badlands. Jake has moved on and produced something fresh and true to the moment.

As a rabid fan of Jake's for 31 years, I couldn't be happier to see him back in all his glory. It's great to see the live video clips of him on stage smiling and doing what he loves again. Congratulations, Jake, on a rocking new album! And thank you for such an amazing gift to your fans. We love you! :)
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Happy to hear from Jake again but was expecting better, February 21, 2014
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This review is from: Red Dragon Cartel (Audio CD)
I am a guitarist and Jake E. Lee is one of my guitar GOD heroes. My favorite period of his is the Badlands material. I wasn't expecting Badlands IV by any means when I heard "Feeder" and "Deceived" so I was staying open to something different. I'm really pleased that Jake decided to make a return but, my feelings on the new album are very mixed. Out of the ten tracks, I only like 4 of them. That's not a good percentage for an album's value. The songs I don't care for may be partly because the style of rock doesn't suit my taste but, mostly, I don't think they're strong songs.

First, I'll address my "duds". "Shout It Out", "Wasted", "Slave", & "Big Mouth" all have the trappings of a BIG arena-rock sound that comes off as pretentious and dated and basically just gives me a headache. "Big Mouth", while featuring some kick-a$$ lead vocals from Maria Brink, sounds like one of those weak, post-Empire Queensryche songs. (doesn't the new Geoff Tate-Queensryche album have a 'Slave' on it, too?) "Feeder", while being the first song that kicked off this RDC project, is ok, but, not great. It sounds like it was written for Ozzy's whiney voice ("picking daises in the summertime") so getting Robin Zander to sing it was a bit of a waste. It's not a good vehicle to display the unique tonalities of his voice. I saved War Machine for last. This one is particularly bad. While obviously paying homage to one of my favorite bands of all-time, Sabbath, did we really have to wait 15 or so years for Jake to come up with a porno-style chord re-arrangement of War Pigs and N.I.B.?? The chorus in the tune (which I liked) is left stranded by a verse that has me singing "some people say my love cannot be true" in my head. Why, Jake??

On the bright side of this review, my faves are "Deceived", "Fall From The Sky (Seagull)", "Redeem Me", and "Exquisite Tenderness". I LOVE the main "Bark"-style riff of "Deceived" and the song itself is very strong. It's first on the album for a reason. Another one of those 'last songs written for the album' stories. "Fall From The Sky" has a beautifully written and performed main melody line that will (at least, should) have you singing it after the first listen. It's a great tune that TOWERS over the songs adjacent to it in the track listing. "Redeem Me" is an awesome blues-rocker that I imagined Eric Martin from Mr. Big ripping up to give you an idea of what it sounds like if you haven't heard it yet. Vocalist Sass Jordan did a GREAT job on this track. "Exquisite Tenderness" is a 2 and a half minute-long piano piece that I'm assuming was performed by Jake(?) and I was really impressed. A beautiful piece with some very alluring melodies throughout. Although the performance was a bit heavy-handed and lacked the finesse of a more experienced player, I still really enjoyed it.

Overall, as I listen to the album, it's too scattered and lacks focus because of all the style (in music and production approaches) and vocalist changes. Please understand, I don't shy away from diversity of style on a single rock album. "News Of The World" from Queen, for example, is one of my faves and it's ALL OVER THE PLACE (like many of the awesome Queen albums) but, it works. RDC seems too "patchwork" and is a difficult listen all the way through. This approach doesn't flow for me and I feel like I deserve a partial refund! lol I am planning on seeing RDC live (mostly because I'm DYING to hear him play a Badlands song live. I saw a NAMM performance of "Sun Red Sun" on YT and it was great!) so I'm curious and enthused to see/hear the dynamic of this new band.

So, I'm hoping Jake will finish the tour and stick around this time and release another album but, more focused and 'band-like".
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I tried to like this..., January 28, 2014
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This review is from: Red Dragon Cartel (Audio CD)
but it just isn't doing anything for me. All the guest vocals kind of make it feel like a hodge podge, and to be honest, even the guitar seems kind of buried and generic to me. This is likely to be put away and seldom played again. I'm a huge fan of Jake-era Ozzy and Badlands. I don't expect someone to just repeat the same formula from the 80's, but somehow, when I pre-ordered and anxiously waited for this, I expected better.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Dissapointed..., February 1, 2014
This review is from: Red Dragon Cartel (Audio CD)
From the guy who gave us Bark At The Moon, The Ultimate Sin and the two magnificent Badlands albums this is not what I was expecting, Jake E. Lee is one of the most underrated guitarist around, he is brilliant and I was more than happy to listen to his new material.
I gave it two stars for his guitar work, as always over the top. Vocals...terrible...sooo terrible, only Robin Zander's song can be considered decent. My recommendation...get a new vocalist, musicians on his league not amateurs...
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Well Below Par, Unfortunately, February 27, 2014
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This review is from: Red Dragon Cartel (Audio CD)
I really wanted to like this, as I have liked pretty much everything else Jake has done in the past. Simple truth of the matter is that far too much of this sounds like regurgitated tracks from "A Fine Pink Mist", both in terms of composition and the recorded sounds of the guitar. Much of the material is bland, and it could have benefitted from having more time spent on the writing to come up with decent hooks and sharper riffs. And I'm really not hearing a lot of fire in Jake's playing, he's actually quite sloppy and technically well below his normal standard.

Vocal performances range from reasonably good to downright horrible, and sadly the main singer is the worst thing about the whole endeavour! All of the guest vocalists give this a very disjointed feeling. In fact, it's almost as if this was recorded to feature the guest vocalists at the expense of all other facets.

Sorry Jake, this should have been much better!
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Comeback Derailed, January 29, 2014
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This review is from: Red Dragon Cartel (Audio CD)
OK, so Jake E Lee has been out of the spotlight for a long time and unfortunately this isn't putting his best foot forward. The guitar work is stellar as is to be expected but vocally, Jake needs a better singer. I know replacing Ray Gillen is a lost cause but surely there is another singer somewhere out there better than Darren Smith. Why not hit up John Corabi and have a Badlands/Scream fusion?: I really wanted to like this CD but I can't get past the vocals.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jake E Lee is awesome!, March 30, 2014
This review is from: Red Dragon Cartel (MP3 Music)
Jake E Lee is back and better than ever!. I highly recommend this album, it is worth every penny. He brings back the excitement with his dynamic playing.
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Red Dragon Cartel
Red Dragon Cartel by Red Dragon Cartel (Audio CD - 2014)
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