Get It Out by Altitudes & Attitude (Megaforce Records)
I’ve rarely found albums made by a joining of musicians from various bands to be satisfying. For whatever reason, lack of focus or egos, they’ve not worked for me. The meeting of minds of Anthrax bassist Frank Bello and Megadeth bassist David Ellefson works! It kicks ass, it raises my heartbeat and reminds me what makes the two members’ bands so special.
Bassists, being the main melody providers, means that the songs on Get It Out are firmly focused on rhythm and melody. Bello’s vocals are melodic and strong, and his and Ellefson’s performances are always in service of the song. Jeff Friedl slays on the drum kit while every song features a killer guitarist.
The title track opens Get It Out, sounding for all the world like Helmet, especially with the tonal interplay between guitar parts, the song boosted by the bass melodies, Bello’s voice almost breaking with the passion. Late follows, with Ace Frehley on lead guitar and Miki Black on guitar and backing vocals. That thrumming bassline propels Frehley and Bello’s vocals to the stratosphere, when the melodic chorus kicks in, you’re singing along to Bello’s positive vibes and Frehley’s and Black’s dramatic riffing. Jon Donais of Anthrax and Shadows Fall lends his guitar efforts to Out Here, the chugging bass drawing you into the catchy and uplifting song.
Megadeth and Anthrax know catchy, but with Ellefson and Bello in creative control, the bright and accessible songs really shows the duo’s talents, especially when the lyrical content is of drug addiction and pain, as heard on Slip, about a childhood neighbor of Bello’s who fell into addiction. Talk To Me is a song that doesn’t sound like either member’s bands, Bello’s vocals and the bass melody raising spirits and hope.
The dark instrumental Leviathan showcases Ellefson’s capabilities as well as features Steel Panther’s Satchel on electric and acoustic guitars and reminds you the large part the bassist plays in creating Megadeth’s signature sound.
The last three songs on Get It Out were originally released in early 2014 as an EP. Don’t look for any revelations in Booze & Cigarettes, it’s simply enough the sound of two older, wiser metalheads getting their groove on, and that’s good enough when played with this much passion. Tell The World shows Bello can sing as well as belt it out, the song trades heavy metalisms with lighter touches, sure to get the lighters raised high when played live. Here Again opens with a chunky bass lead, sounding like the best combination of Megadeth’s slippery guitar leads and Anthrax’s gritty punk beats and vocal delivery. The secret weapons get their time to shine with several bass solos towards the end.
After hearing Altitudes & Attitude you’ll know how much soul and creativity goes into everything from Frank Bello and David Ellefson, in and out of Anthrax and Megadeth, and what they can achieve together as heard on the headbanging and enlightening songs of Get It Out.
(Review by Bret Miller)
Altitudes & Attitude on Facebook