Manraze, that powerful trio consisting of Def Leppard’s lead guitarist Phil Collen who also stands front & center on MR lead vocals, the Sex Pistol’s iconic drummer Paul Cook, and Collen’s former Girl band bassist Simon Laffy brings in 2012 with a fast paced tribute for one of Britain’s best and brightest in the world of BSB.
Tommy Hill secured the MCE Insurance British Super Bike Championship title after an epic climax during the 2011 season celebrating an emotional maiden crown at Brands Hatch back in October 2011. His pivotal journey to winning the championship is chronicled in two documentaries created by avid motorbike rider & veteran film maker Mark Sloper. In 2011 Manraze debuted their kinetic single ‘I, Superbiker’, aptly titled after the film, as the theme song for the first half of this electric series of motorbike racing and personal, introspective looks into the lives of the die-hard contenders. Director Mark Sloper continued his emotional chronicle in part 2 of the series “The Showdown: I, Super Biker II” due to be released in 135 theatres across the UK February 21st, 2012. This time around Sloper places an even greater focus on Tommy Hill who lost the 2010 BSB race due to injuries sustained during a crash but manages to triumphantly emerge in the film’s sequel as the 2011 British Super Bike champion winning by 0.006th of a second. Once again Mark approached Manraze about delivering a game-changing anthem that would embody the spirit of the British super bike racers.
Manraze’s new energetic rock/dance track ‘Take On The World’ featuring newcomer Debbi Blackwell-Cook, is a tribute written for the strength & unmoving dedication Tommy Hill put forth to win the 2011 BSB championship. Phil Collen states, “Tommy’s been through the ringer. I love stories about people overcoming such adversity. Writing this song for him was a no-brainer. Check out his history. We really admire him.” The song & video due for release and distribution by Primary Wave Music will be available worldwide for download via I-tunes starting February 7th, 2012.
iTunes Link: “Take On The World”
Check out the “Take On the World” video clip below!
Don’t judge a CD by its cover. Lets face it, the CD cover for Manraze’s sophomore effort, PunkFunkRootsRock is pretty darn ugly. Don’t let the ugly cover stop you for checking this CD out, as the music is good…..damn good in fact.
I have been looking forward to this CD, ever since Phil Collen told Hard Hock Hideout about it back in May. I liked Manraze’s debut Surreal a lot, so picking this one up was a no brainer for this hard rock fan. I can gladly say, this is no sophomore slump for Manraze. PunkFunkRootsRock is every bit as good as its predecessor, if not better.
The album starts off with a very Def Leppard like tune “Over My Dead Body”. This is a great song, and an instant hit in my opinion.
“I C U in Everything” also has a Def Leppard like feel, but Phil sings in a lower register that reminds me of (dare I say) Marilyn Manson. He doesn’t sing this way for the whole song, and I think it gives the tune a very cool vibe.
“All I Wanna Do” has a cool 70’s like feel to it. This pop/rock tune is pretty darn catchy.
The CD takes an unexpected reggae-like twist with the song “Closer To Me “. I like reggae every now and then, and I must admit that I like “Closer To Me ” quite a bit. You wouldn’t think a song like this would work on a CD like this, but it does.
“Lies” is a another great rocker. This is an infectious tune that sounds great cranked at maximum volume.
When I first read that Manraze was covering Jimi Hendrix, I was fearful that this cover might blow. Hendrix is such a hard act to cover. Few bands have pulled it off very well. Needless to say, Manraze knocked their cover of “Fire” out of the park. This is an extremely cool version of this song. I love it!
Phil Collen shows that he has plenty of rock left in him with the song, “I, Superbiker”. Hearing a song like this, gives me hope that Def Leppard can one day return to its hard rockin’ roots. Phil shreds on this track. This is killer stuff!!
If Phil Collen, Simon Laffy and Paul Cook keep making CD’s like this, they are going to be in high demand as a live act. This is really good stuff, and there isn’t a bad song in the bunch.
If you liked the first Manraze album, Surreal, then you should definitely check out PunkFunkRootsRock. I think you will enjoy it.
Rating: Out of 10
1. Over My Dead Body
2. I C U In Everything
3. All I Wanna Do
4. Closer To Me
6. Get Action
7. Edge Of The World
10. I, Superbiker
Phil Collen -vocals, guitar
Simon Laffy – bass, background vocals
Paul Cook – drums, background vocals
Surreal is the debut record of super group trio, Phil Collen (Def Leppard) Paul Cook (Sex Pistols) and Simon Laffey (Girl).
My first thought going into this record was, how much of Def Leppard’s sound will be mixed into this record. Much to my surprise, not as much as I thought. Yes, there are a few Leppardisms here and there, but this is a completely different sounding record. Surreal is more of a pure rock record, and an eclectic mix of styles.
On Surreal, I hear a blend of punk, pop, hard rock, and reggae. It is a fusion of styles that make this one of the more interesting records as of late.
The song writing is somewhat simple, but it is catchy. The songs get in your head, and stay there.
Some of my favorite cuts are Turn It Up, Every Second of Every Day, Skin Crawl and Halo. These aren’t the only good songs by any means. There really isn’t a bad cut on this disc.
Not only is Phil Collen an outstanding guitarist, but he is pretty damn good in the vocal department. His vocal style is similar to Def Leppard’s Joe Elliott. The chemistry between Cook, Collen and Laffey is quite apparent, and it shows in the music. The songs are upbeat and fun to listen to. Not only do I hear Def Leppard’s influence, but I also hear a Police vibe in some songs.
The bottom line, I have been thoroughly enjoying this disc, and I think you will to. Surreal hits stores on June 3rd. Don’t miss picking this one up!
Rating:Out of 10
1. This Is
2. Turn It Up
3. Runnin’ Me Up
4. Every Second of Every Day
5. Spinning Out
6. Can’t Find My Own Way
7. Skin Crawl
9. Connected to You
11. It’s Entertainment
12. Shadow Man
Man Raze is:
Phil Collen – Guitars and Lead Vocals
Paul Cook – Drums
Simon Laffey – Bass
The band that features Phil Collen, Simon Laffy, and Sex Pistol drummer Paul Cook issued the following update on their myspace page today:
We’re sure that you’ve heard the rumors over recent weeks and we are now finally able to confirm that our debut album, ’Surreal’, is set to be released in the US on June 3rd on VH1 Classics. We are excited to bring our music to our fans in the US and can’t wait to blast it for everyone live. Also, we recently filmed a ’secret’ gig in Los Angeles that is to be broadcast on VH1 at the time of the album release. Photos from the gig can be found in the media section on our website at http://www.manraze.com.
We thank all of you for your support while we were recording the album and now look forward to bringing it to you – after all, that’s what counts, isn’t it!! Stay tuned here for more album and tour news coming soon! Bring on the amps– it’s time to rock!
See ya soon,
Simon, Phil & Paul
Check out the video below for the Manraze song, Turn it Up!
You can download this song for free off of the Manraze website, at this location!