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Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 8:42 pm
8/10 Review:

‘Dust‘ is the follow-up to 2015’s ‘Cauterize’ by Tremonti . When Tremonti originally recorded ‘Cauterize’ they had the intention of having 2 albums worth of material – not just writing and recording 20 songs, using just 13 of them and having the extra 7 as ‘B-Sides’; that was never on the cards for Tremonti. The band, completed by second guitarist Eric Friedman, bassist Wolfgang Van Halen (he’s not often a touring musician with the band as he has touring obligations to this little band his Father plays in – maybe you’ve heard of them – Van Halen!!!) and last but not least drummer Garrett Whitlock. Tremonti opted to split the 20 tracks amongst two records, releasing them 1 year apart from one another. What Tremonti managed to pull off here worked very well. They made two quality albums worth of material that work as one cohesive double album you can play back-to-back, or enjoy them as their own separate beasts entirely.

The album opens with untethered aggression in the form of the song ‘My Last Mistake’, blistering riffs accompanied with Mark’s vocal delivery adds to the feeling of aggression on the track, the chorus isn’t anything out of left field for Tremonti and remains somewhat predictable, but incredibly catchy nonetheless.

‘The Cage’ completely took me by surprise and it shouldn’t have. The guitars from Mark and Eric Friedman have so many hooks you roll through a verse, then a chorus, all the meanwhile thinking to yourself “Oh man, that was the best bit of the track! No wait.. it gets even better?!”
Then the earth shattering heavy bridge followed by the solo happens, and I have come to the conclusion that it might be one of the best songs by Tremonti I’ve heard.

‘Once Dead’ is a blistering heavy thrash song. Drummer Garrett Whitlock is MVP for this track though, showcasing his incredibly fast, hard hitting and dynamic playing style. Things slow down significantly for title track ‘Dust’. The vocal delivery and lyrics on this track speak a lot of emotion, especially when the chorus explodes into a real arena-rock style sing-a-long chorus “Why did you head out? Did you lack the love? Hide from our eyes now, the reflection of…”. The bridge after the second chorus builds great intensity as the song reaches it’s closing chapter, and as you can imagine the guitar solo explodes with colour balanced with equal parts shred and melodic phrasing.

‘Betray Me’ continues down the heavier path whilst the track after, ‘Tore My Heart Heart Out’, blends some of the slower more emotional moments with crushing riffs and breakdowns. ‘Catching Fire’ is an immensely catchy track. Punchy, fast and dynamic from start to finish. Perhaps the best bit of ‘Catching Fire’ is the second verse where the guitar goes quiet for a couple of bars and your left with just Wolfgang Van Halen and Garrett Whitlock pounding away at their respective instruments. If that isn’t my favourite part, then a close runner-up would be the guitar harmonies from Mark and Eric after the bridge. ‘Catching Fire’ really demonstrates how locked in with each other these musicians are and, also why they are all held in such high esteem by the hard rock/heavy metal community. ‘Never Wrong’ feels lighter and more reflective in it’s delivery and lyrical themes. ‘Rising Storm’ brings the aggressive approach back before the album finishes with the delicate and soothing acoustics on ‘Unable To See’. Unlike ‘Cauterize‘’s closer ‘Providence’ that feature some really heavy sections, ‘Unable To See’ feels more optimistic and lighter.

Even though ‘Cauterize‘/‘Dust‘ were recorded at the same time, overall ‘Dust’ feels heavier, which is strange because the balance and ratio of, let’s say ‘light’ and ‘dark’ songs is almost the same amount as ‘Cauterize‘. Whatever it is about this record, it just resonates slightly more with me personally, than the previous album. If you enjoy the darker shades of Mark Tremonti or any of his affiliated groups, like myself, I am sure you will highly enjoy this record.

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 9:39 pm
Mark Tremonti returns with the eagerly anticipated companion album to his 2015 release, Cauterize.

Grammy award-winning Mark Tremonti is best known for his work as the lead guitarist with both Alter Bridge and Creed. Back in 2012, Tremonti decided to spread his wings and branch out. He teamed up with long-time friends and fellow musicians Eric Friedman (guitar) and Garret Whitlock (drums) for his debut solo album All I Was. The album was also Mark Tremonti’s first as lead vocalist. Wolfgang Van Halen completed the band’s lineup on bass shortly thereafter.

Following the release of 2015’s critically acclaimed sophomore album Cauterize, Tremonti is back with the follow-up/companion album Dust and boy does he mean business. Straight out of the blocks, Tremonti hits us hard with the ferocious triple whammy of the hard and heavy “My Last Mistake,” the frantic “Once Dead,” and “The Cage,” which has a euphoric quality reminiscent of “Metalingus” from Alter Bridge’s One Day Remains album. The latter will undoubtedly become a future fan favourite.

One thing apparent is that Tremonti’s latest offering is as heavy, if not heavier, than the last. He has cut loose with fast guitar riffs, which will whip the fans into a frenzy when performed live. That speed is complimented by the furious kick drum groove of Garret Whitlock. As you would want and expect, the album features a myriad of Tremonti’s fine solos with Mark’s melodic vocals adding balance to the heavier elements.

The title track, “Dust,” has received significant airplay on the likes of Planet Rock radio. It is a nice change of pace on the album and slows down the proceedings. With “Betray Me” and “Tore My Heart Out,” there are those familiar Tremonti riffs that every fan knows and loves. Again, “Catching Fire” is another steamer, with a great melody. The beautifully heartfelt number, “Unable To See,” closes the album, adding texture to the record, and highlighting Mark’s phenomenal vocals.

Not only does Dust feature an abundance of passionate playing from Mark and company, but that same passion is also highly evident in his songwriting. Dust will inevitably be one of the albums of the year. It is being released via Fret 12 Records on the April 29.

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Thu Apr 28, 2016 11:25 pm

I got my first chance to listen to Dust today, and every time I listen to Tremonti or see them live, they always seem to surprise me with their sound. Mark Tremonti has got to be one of most solid musicians touring today and his band mates seem just as capable. I honestly can’t wait to give this one a heap more listens tomorrow in prep for the album release this Friday.

Oh yeah, that reminds me. Tremonti’s Dust Hits stores THIS FRIDAY, APRIL 29TH! Get your asses out there and get this album and help support the artists that make our live much more livable.

Dedication breeds the best results. Grammy Award-winning multiplatinum guitarist and singer Mark Tremonti continues to wholeheartedly commit himself to his craft, barely drawing a breath for air in between his eponymous band, Alter Bridge, and Creed.

Following tours supporting his critically acclaimed 2012 solo debut, All I Was, and Alter Bridge’s chart-topping Fortress, he immediately began writing in his Orlando Studio at the top of 2014. Joined by longtime guitarist Eric “Erock” Friedman, drummer Garrett Whitlock, and bassist Wolfgang Van Halen—a studio first—Tremonti penned more than twenty-five songs over the course of multiple sessions.

“We wanted to do a ton of songs,” he affirms. “I decided to take my entire catalog of material, get everything out, and purge it. On All I Was, we couldn’t spend as much time on pre-production. Now, we took the time to tear the songs apart and put them back together again so they could become as dynamic as possible. That helped make the new music what is.”

Emerging from the most prolific period of his two-decade career, Tremonti delivers successive albums—Cauterize and Dust—on his Fret12 Records with production by Michael “Elvis” Baskette [Alter Bridge/Slash}. Cauterize lead the charge in summer 2015 and Dust is following in April 2016, the one-two punch of modern thrash and melody that has become the group’s signature fuels this engine, but Tremonti tweaks it with a polyrhythmic jackhammer at just the right moments. As a result, the music stands at a crossroads between timeless metal, infectious hard rock, and progressive pummeling.

“We were going after three elements,” he goes on. “To me, melody is the most important part of any song. Combining that with speed metal is the most rewarding aspect of assembling the music. Then, we color the songs with a modern twist of polyrhythms. It makes a statement.”
From the first riffs of album opener “My Last Mistake” to the final notes of the closer “Unable To See,” it is apparent that Dust is not a collection of B-sides or leftover material. These ten new tracks continue to showcase Mark’s hard rock/heavy metal influences alongside the material from Cauterize. Songs like “Once Dead,” “Betray Me” and “Rising Storm” hold their own place as weapons in Tremonti’s musical arsenal.

“The Dust songs are just as important to me as the Cauterize songs. ‘My Last Mistake’ is about not being strong enough to break the severable ties of an all consuming bad influence whether it be a person, addiction or bad habits in general. ‘Betray Me’ is about the purity of trust and ugliness of betrayal. ‘The Cage’ is about a foolish person who was to stubborn to listen to the good advice of others and now walks the earth a broken man.”

The first single from Dust is the title track and Mark’s favorite song from both albums.

“Dust is about how it feels to watch a close friend lose confidence in you.”

“On these records, we knew what we were capable of, and we ran with it,” he asserts. “The great thing about touring as a band is you realize what songs excite you on the road. That’s why when we got back into the studio, we followed the path we did and fortified this sound.”

It’s a sound that continues to engage listeners. The group sold out countless shows on its tours and has a full slate of dates lined up ahead—including appearances at major festivals such as Download Festival, Graspop Metal Meeting, and Hellfest. Meanwhile, Cauterize reaffirmed Tremonti as a metallic force with both Classic Rock and Metal Hammer awarding it an impressive 8-out-of-10 and The Sun, Guitarist, and Kerrang! praising it with 4-out-of-5 stars.

However, Cauterize and Dust usher in the next age of Tremonti.

“I hope people can enjoy the music the way I do,” he leaves off. “As we were recording, there was this excitement amongst everyone. We go into every record questioning if we’ll be able to outdo the previous album. That’s my goal—to make a better record every time. If one fan thinksDust is better than Cauterize and All I Was, we’ve done our job.”

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 9:20 am
by SHEAKENBAKEN ... o_takeover

UG Gave it a 9/10
Sound: Admittedly, I'm a bit of a recent convert to Tremonti. Having been a big fan of his work in Alter Bridge and spending a fair chunk of my high school years spinning "My Own Prison" and "Human Clay," I've always admired Mark Tremonti as a guitarist and a musician in general, but it wasn't until recently that I realized the ride I was about to take when I first listened to "All I Was" and "Cauterize."

Definitely a lot more thrash-flavoured than his work with Alter Bridge and Creed, his first two records with his self-named band showed a very pronounced influence from bands like Metallica. While their styles are not anywhere close to the same, Tremonti's music differs from Creed's and even Alter Bridge's by focusing on guitar solos, and "Dust" is no different from his first two records with this band in that respect. Every song on this record has a ripping lead section, and there are more than enough notes on this record to satiate the kind of guitarists who voted his solo in Alter Bridge's "Blackbird" #1 in a recent UG guitar solo poll.

It should be known that Mark wrote this album mostly around the same time that he wrote the tunes from "Cauterize," and the sound of the record reflects that, with a pretty similar spread of heavy tunes (as well as a couple of well-placed ballads). Fans of Mark's work who may not have been familiar with his work beyond Creed and Alter Bridge might find the opening salvo of thrash metal from "My Last Mistake" a bit surprising, but much of the album still has a very radio-friendly melodic sense about it. This is, by no means, a bad thing at all, as it gets used to very epic effect in certain tracks, like my personal favourite from the album, the title track "Dust." Tracks like "Once Dead," "Betray Me" and "The Cage" boast both huge speed metal riffs and big melodic sing-along choruses.

Guitar playing fans will no doubt be focusing on the riffs and solos on this record. And they'd be right to, considering that Mark's playing is on fire for pretty much the entire record. But surprisingly, Mark's vocals are a pretty big show-stopper as well. While Mark has shared his vocal style on both Creed and Alter Bridge material before, he really seems to have come into his own as a vocalist on this record. While he defers to Myles Kennedy's talents in Alter Bridge, he proves himself more than capable as a vocalist in this band, and especially on this record, where it seems his vocal skills have shown a noticeable progression. A perfect example of this are his soaring harmonies in the title track, which hit me right in the gut every time.

The album also packs a few surprises with its variety. While many of the songs contain very similar elements, Mark shows himself to be quite the consummate arranger, giving songs many different emotional and stylistic flourishes, from the huge, epic melodic choruses of songs like "The Cage" to mellower moments like "Dust" and even tackling near-psychedelic atmospheres on tracks like "Tore My Heart Out" and "Never Wrong." But for all the variety in the record, it sounds like a cohesive and coherent record. Even the very light closing track, "Unable to See," feels like it fits in perfectly.

And for the guitar fans, there is a lot to love about this record. From downtuned guitar riffs (going as low as B flat on "Tore My Heart Out") to atmospheric clean guitar passages, and all of the solos... Mark reminds us all why he is one of this generation's most respected guitar players. Tone and production-wise, his guitars sound huge and heavy, and there's even a bit of a vintage flair to the distortion and some of the clean tones (check out the phaser-laden intro of the title track!) that make this record almost sound like 1986 on steroids. Mark's solos run the gamut from shredders' delights ("Betray Me," and "My Last Mistake," which Mark recently broke down for UG in a lesson video!) to slower, more melodic affairs ("Dust," "Tore My Heart Out").

All around, the production is spot-on and the performances by the other members of the band are pretty great. Special attention goes to Garrett Whitlock on drums, who performs many excellent drum fills and intros on the record. Wolfgang Van Halen completes the rhythm section by holding down the low-end on the bass. Eric Friedman performs second guitar and vocals on the record as well, and his sound locks in very well with Mark's and provides a perfect backdrop for his playing. // 9

Lyrics: As mentioned in the previous section, Mark's vocals have been steadily improving since "All I Was," and "Dust" reaps the rewards quite well. Mark's vocal style sits well against his most immediate peers, Scott Stapp and Myles Kennedy, and to be completely fair to both of them, Mark may be able to easily give them both a run for their money on this album. The vocal arrangements are done quite well too, with plenty of great harmony vocals (some of them provided by Eric and Wolfgang), and a great sense of melodicism. Mark's vocal delivery really takes the cake on this record, with a distinctive raspiness and a much more well-developed range than previous releases.

Lyrically speaking, a lot of the songs deal with personal issues like betrayal, bad influences, relationships, self-esteem... very atypical topics for the thrash/speed metal genre. One can't help but wonder if the lyrics for songs like the title track (especially lines like "You carried the weight of everyone/After all the time we spent/Rewriting the rules that now we bend/The whole damn thing has turned to dust/You left us alone, defeated us") are allusions to former bandmates, or former lovers, but in a manner that's different for this kind of lyrical style, they're delivered with less vitriol and more melancholy. There are plenty of references to shame and faith and trust on the album, and many layers of introspection.

While the introspective style is not usually one found in speed metal, where we're too used to hearing songs about dragons and swords, it fits the style of the songs quite well on the album. Even during the band's more energetic moments, the well-written lyrics fit well in this setting. // 9

Overall Impression: So, while I am still quite a newbie to Tremonti's solo work, I find myself blown away by the new album. Almost every song reminds me of being 13 again, picking up a guitar for the first time, staring longingly at the Metallica posters on my wall and absorbing every single lesson column from Guitar World I could get my hands on, and why I play guitar in the first place. Even the short time I've spent sitting with this album has inspired my playing, and coming from someone whose tastes usually run more into the progressive metal genre, it's quite a statement to make for this album. Mark has hit a sweet spot with this album, brilliantly mixing excellent guitar playing, heavy riffage, big made-for-radio choruses, and introspective lyricism. While the album doesn't contain a big epic number like Alter Bridge's absolutely magnificent "Blackbird," there are plenty of moments on this album that hark to the kind of epic scope in that song, and the songwriting on this album is mature and even slightly progressive in its own way. The title track has to be the highlight of the album, to me, since it's the most like "Blackbird" with its epic-sounding melodies, huge-sounding choruses and excellent melodic guitar solo.

"Dust" has all the potential to earn a pretty high spot on my top 10 list of 2016, and there have already been some really great releases from other favourite bands of mine this year, like Deftones, Dream Theater, Megadeth and Textures. This album was a huge surprise for me, and this album deserves a good listen if you're a fan of excellent guitar playing and well-written songs. If this is the kind of heavy radio-friendly rock we're hearing in 2016, then I'd be pretty happy with that. If nothing else, it's albums like this that make a great case for good rock music still being alive in 2016.

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 9:28 am
9/10 Review:

When I was privileged to be sent a copy of Dust, the new album from Tremonti to review I didn’t know what to expect. I’d heard bits and pieces of Tremonti at Download 2015, but hadn’t heard any of their studio stuff.

I must say, I was totally blown away with how much I love it!

The album flows so well, each song seemlessly falls into place perfectly.

I love the song Dust. This song for me sits perfectly between Once Dead and Betray Me. Throughout this song, I thought all the way along that a solo would be so unnecessary and would potentially ruin the song… How wrong I was! I was astonished with how brilliantly it worked.

In all honesty, I believe the transition all throughout the album works perfectly, the hard hitting opening track Last Mistake sets the stall out nicely, and leads perfectly into the rest of the album. I also love the way the album finishes with Unable To See, I can see this being one of those anthem songs that you stand in a group with friends and shout out at the top of your voice!

I was a huge fan of Creed growing up, a band which Mark Tremonti was guitarist for, and that influence has definitely shone through in this album.

The whole band have a fantastic sound going on. This album I can liken to a cross between Creed and Disturbed.

Mark Tremonti, Eric Friedman, Wolfgang Van Halen and Garrett Whitlock – RN Salutes You!!

I give this album a solid 9/10

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Fri Apr 29, 2016 6:36 pm
4.5/5 Review:

Review Summary: From Creed to one of the most influential metal artists to date.

The most puzzling aspect of Mark Tremonti's career is the fact that his beginnings consisted of watered down rock with Scott Stapp singing "With Arms Wide Open." If someone told me that years later, Tremonti would release three outstanding metal albums, I would have laughed in their face. Yet here I am, eating my words with the release of "Dust," which is quite possibly Mark Tremonti's best work to date, and that includes everything he has done with Alter Bridge as well.

Dust is an album of emotion, grit, and some downright heavy moments, and it all blends together in a fascinating piece of work that can only be described as complete. With the releases of "All I Was" and "Cauterize" we saw a very influential guitarist transformed into a fantastic vocalist, and it only got better from there. Aspects of both previous albums are present on "Dust." Heavy, dirty riffs, captivating verses, and melodic, engulfing choruses.

What really stood out for me on "Dust" were the lyrics, which by the end of the album, I had completely immersed myself in because it was all so relatable, yet intelligently crafted. In the moody and atmospheric rocker, "Tore My Heart Out" Tremonti delivers an emotional chorus, exclaiming, "You tore my heart out, took it all away. Is it so bad now, is it too late?" A testament to the overall mood of the album.

There are plenty of brilliant melodies present in "Dust" which can be found on tracks like the previously mentioned "Tore My Heart Out," as well as "Never Wrong," and "Unable to See. "The latter is overflowing with soaring melodies and heartfelt lyrics, making it one of the best and most emotional songs Mark has ever written. That said, there are extremely heavy moments like on the track "Catching Fire" which features some pulsing, choppy guitar work that makes you want to thrash around and hit things in an adrenaline fueled rage.

Every musician featured on "Dust" does his part to convey a deeper understanding of metal and what it should be. Great lyrics, entrancing melodies, a driving, dark undertone that sets the standard for the music, and a few face melting solos thrown in for good measure. "Dust" embodies everything metal should strive to be and I can't wait for future releases from a very talented band with a very bright future ahead of them.

Standout tracks:
The Cage
Tore My Heart Out
Unable to See

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Sat Apr 30, 2016 9:37 am
I guess technically any review from Sputnik music is a listener review as it seems like fans doing them to me, but in any case: (4/5)

Review Summary: Mark Tremonti doing what he does best.

It can't be said enough that Mark Tremonti has come a long way from his time with Creed. If Alter Bridge laid the groundwork for Tremonti's evolution into a versatile guitarist and capable vocalist, the Tremonti project is Mark Tremonti spreading his wings and preparing to take flight. Armed with a talented backing band, Tremonti makes a strong argument that perhaps he is better without Alter Bridge and Creed.

Dust doesn't just pick up from where Cauterize left off. It improves from it in almost every single category. Tremonti continues to deliver blistering solos as he's done since his most recent work with Alter Bridge, but the real surprise is that Dust features his best vocal performance to date. His confidence has continued to grow since All I Was and he sounds comfortable front and center. He proves he can be powerful and gripping with "My Last Mistake" and "Catching Fire" yet equally compelling with "Dust", "Unable To See", and album highlight "Tore My Heart Out". His delivery is immediate and impactful, with just enough restraint to leave a lasting impression throughout Dust's 43-minute runtime.

But where Dust, and ultimately Tremonti as a band, outshine Alter Bridge and Creed is through an impeccable rhythm section. Tremonti has always been a metalhead at heart and Eric Friedman, Garrett Whitlock, and Wolfgang Van Halen are more than willing to throw down like a metal band. Friedman provides a necessary touch of melody with his backing vocals fortifying Tremonti's crisp tone in clean harmony and consistently delivers crushing, powerful riffs to go with Tremonti's soaring leads. Van Halen makes the most of his opportunities to shine on bass and does his job well, serving as a strong and underrated backbone in the band and as a necessary element in the softer moments. Whitlock, arguably the key cog tying it all together, is the drummer Mark Tremonti has desperately needed to take his music to another level. He is a force to be reckoned with through the heavier moments and, like Van Halen, makes the most of his opportunities to shine. From a technical standpoint, "The Cage", "Catching Fire", and "Once Dead" are the strongest songs that showcase every member's individual ability and showcase an undeniable chemistry that would make you think these guys have been playing together longer than four years.

Stylistically, there isn't much different to be found on production. Tremonti is comfortable building on the winning formula he found on Alter Bridge's Blackbird with Michael "Elvis" Baskette at the board. Every song sounds and feels massive and the mixing is crystal clear without something being inaudible or overbearing. While there's nothing wrong with staying in familiar territory, Tremonti ultimately leaves you wondering if he is truly serious about forging a unique identity for this project. Sometimes Tremonti travels too close to Alter Bridge's neck of the woods: "Dust" and "Unable To See", for example, sounds like lost Blackbird B-sides. Elsewhere, "Tore My Heart Out" wouldn't sound out of place on Fortress. In its defense, however, "Tore My Heart Out" stands as the undeniable album highlight, marrying Mark Tremonti's strongest and most compelling vocals with a rare willingness to experiment with progression, even if it's in small windows.

Like its counterpart Cauterize, Dust heavily leans on the typical verse-chorus-verse-chorus-bridge/solo-chorus structure, leading to songs running together and sounding similar to one another. "Never Wrong" and "Rising Storm" are the worst offenders, neither adding anything new nor sounding interesting enough to justify their existence. Unlike Cauterize, Dust has more hits than misses. At its best, Dust gallops at full speed while being aesthetically pleasing enough for anyone to enjoy. It's fast and heavy enough for fans of thrash while retaining an ear for melody and anthemic choruses for a hard rocker. In short, this is Mark Tremonti doing what Mark Tremonti has done best for nearly ten years. It's a stretch to say he's influential, but he's consistently made great music. With a stronger band behind him, Tremonti has the potential to make very special music. Cauterize and Dust have put Tremonti on the right track to being special, but until Mark Tremonti shows a willingness to shed his past and get more creative, the Tremonti project will only be a fun diversion.

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Sun May 01, 2016 2:21 pm
83/100 Review: ... -Dust.html

Mark Tremonti has earned his spurs frankly in the metal world. First as a guitarist of Creed, Alter Bridge later and since 2012 he is working solo well on the road. The previous CD (Cauterize) dates from June 2015 and a year later appears Dust. In the meantime he also toured. It raises the question of Dust no rush job has become.

Well, if that's the case then Mark Tremonti may work better each time this way. Dust does in fact quality not inferior to its predecessor. Where it took a few spins at Cauterize before the numbers lingered, they seize Dust directly to the throat. There is clearly time into songs with a head and tail where it still managed to do best reflected the qualities of guitar playing. So much is already evident in the opening track My Last Mistake. No endless noodling or unnecessary tricks to fill the place. No, every note played by the man's touch, while the solos often tell a story in itself.

As mentioned, the melodic aspect is further explored in Dust and improved. Most clearly so in a quiet song as Betray Me. The frustration which undoubtedly was a source of inspiration when writing, is transformed in a powerful way in something beautiful. The second part of Dust has become quieter and that may be an improvement tip: Tremonti better alternating bright and faster songs with those in which some gas is reversed. It would benefit the dynamics.

Nothing but praise for what is at Dust. Mark Tremonti is a guitarist who also vocally his ground state. How often have we seen it differently? Compliments in this area! The closing Unable To See is a subtle tribute to Randy Rhodes and is one of the highlights. You could appreciate the previous work of Tremonti, you can also purchase Dust blind.

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Mon May 02, 2016 10:09 am

Genuine questions: does Mark Tremonti ever put down a guitar? Does he shower reciting his harmonic minor scales? Does he sleep cradling his custom PRS model? Does he do his shopping sweep-picking while browsing the vegetable section? Whatever this guy does or doesn’t do, he is no short of a guitar God and Dust delivers just another reason to worship the guy just a tad more.

Leaving no time to ease you gently into the album, Dust blares into the single ‘My Last Mistake’, offering a melodic yet aggressive vocal style as well as an anticipated well-phrased and abstract solo from Tremonti himself. In previous albums, Tremonti’s shredding has sometimes been too shoe-horned in, however, it appears that with this new release the band have really learned their lesson with when it’s appropriate to melt fans’ faces. Unlike most heavy bands, where Tremonti excel is with their ability to construct songs with structures that are undoubtedly progressive and blisteringly brutal yet flow in such a way which is logical for the listener.

Soaring through ‘The Cage’ and ‘Once Dead’, it’s evident how many hours have been put into the production of this album to make it as musically complex as possible, ensuring that each instrument is given the opportunity to break new boundaries since the release of Cauterize. With ‘Catching Fire’ in particular, the band are at their strongest while drummer, Garrett Whitlock, practically runs a marathon firing away at those pedals during the best breakdown Tremonti have composed to date. With all the attention focused on Mark Tremonti, previously it has been easy to overlook the other members of the band’s efforts, however, Dust completely gives each musician their own glossy pedestal while they stand alongside the Grammy Award-winning multi platinum guitarist/singer/genius that realistically everyone knows their band for.

Of course, everyone likes a riff they can bob their head to but of course after half an hour of intense neck jolting and fist shaking, a sit down really is needed no matter how metal you think you might be. Thankfully, ‘Unable to See’ and ‘Tore My Heart Out’ provide quick breathers which give you an opportunity to appreciate how fierce and raw the other tracks on the album are. WIthout this, it would be safe to state that Dust may have become ‘just another metal album with lots of chugs’.

There’s been a defining leap made for Tremonti with this new album. Incorporating just the right percentage of Alter Bridge and post-grunge hardcore elements, Dust is for both existing fans and those who are just joining the Mark Tremonti tribe. No cuts have been made here while even the recording techniques demonstrate how many sleepless nights have been caused by the production of the album (meanwhile I’ll have sleepless nights over its release). Could the future for Tremonti get any brighter than this?

9 out of 10

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Mon May 02, 2016 7:45 pm

For over two decades, the Grammy Award winning, multi-platinum selling Mark Tremonti has not stopped for a second to come up for air. Growing up in the Midwest portion of the USA, Tremonti became a fan of Heavy Metal and Hard Rock, thus by the age of eleven, was already learning to play guitar. Going on to lead Hard Rock, hit-making juggernaut Creed, Tremonti continued success thereafter with Alter Bridge. Two bands which show diversity of Tremonti as a guitarist and songwriter, the chance for shredding never really was something that fit in with either band through the years. Then, in 2012, Tremonti decided to let his Heavy Metal roots shine when he created the solo debut album All I Was. The album received critical acclaim and Tremonti found himself back in his Orlando, FL based studio ready to record his next solo album in 2014. This time he brought in former Submersed drummer, Garrett Whitlock, Bassist Wolfgang Van Halen (Van Halen), and Guitarist Eric “Erock” Friedman (Submersed, Projected), making the solo project of Tremonti an official band.

Inspired by the new venture, Tremonti would write over twenty-five songs over the course of multiple writing sessions. He states, “I decided I take my entire catalog of material, get everything out, and purge it…Now we took the time to tear the songs apart and put them back together again so they could become dynamic as possible.” With that said, rising from the recording process came two albums, the first being 2015′s Cauterize, released via Tremonti’s Fret12 Records produced by Michael “Elvis” Baskette (Alter Bridge/Slash). The second would be Tremonti’s newest album, Dust, released on April 29, 2016. Now with both albums available to the public, Tremonti makes the ultimate Heavy Metal statement.

Produced by Michael “Elvis” Baskette (Alter Bridge, Slash), Dust stands on its own away from the last two Tremonti albums, vocally, lyrically, and musically. It continues where Cauterize left off, but do not look at Dust as a sequel, the album will do the talking for itself. It all starts with an in-your-face Speed Metal, Old School Metallica feel on “My Last Mistake.” With roaring drums, bass, and guitars, the song will have fans’ heads banging immediately before true amazing shredding guitar solo. Next, “The Cage” starts off with a drum solo by Whitlock and follows with guitars, bass, and vocals mixing a Speed Metal and Hard Rock vibe back and forth throughout the song. Tremonti provides a strong and diverse musical performance along with some impressive soloing as fans will find themselves drawn to the catchy chorus.

Moving right along, thundering guitars, a double bass, and drums start off “Once Dead” before Tremonti joins in on vocals. A Heavy Metal based track, Tremonti provides some amazing wailing guitar solos that complete and enhance the overall vibe. Next is title track off the album, “Dust,” which provides a beautiful solo acoustic guitar intro with Tremonti singing passionately. The song continues with strong steady drums by Whitlock and bass by Van Halen as electric guitars are added to make it a Hard Rock Ballad. Like the tracks prior, Tremonti provides a powerful solo while Friedman plays rhythm guitar layering the sound. That aside, what makes this song truly magic is the powerful vocal performance by Tremonti along with bandmates backing vocals. Keeping the energy level high, “Betray Me” provides more Heavy Metal sounds with Tremonti’s voice that is fierce and upfront. The song based on “the purity of trust and ugliness of betrayal” will have fans throwing their fists in the air when Tremonti, once again, breaks out into a shredding guitar solo.

As “Tore My Heart Out” begins, the song combines a Rock ballad and Hard Rock feel dueling back and forth throughout the song. This is mostly due in part to Tremonti’s even singing with the layering of both guitars and soloing throughout the track. Next, “Catching Fire” starts off with Tremonti’s singing extremely aggressive as the song builds. Adding to the intensity, Van Halen and Whitlock percussion section is tight, while Tremonti and Friedman help the song build and grow heavier.

Taking on the vibe of The Who’s “Who are You?,” “Never Wrong” offers a catchy chorus and Hard Rock song that fans will find themselves drawn into, especially on the next song, “Rising Storm.” On the latter, Tremonti provides some of his most vivid singing of the record as his guitar work will have listeners completely in awe. This is before Dust concludes with “Unable to See,” which enters with a beautiful and melodic electric guitar solo before Tremonti begins singing and the solo eases into steady strumming. The bass and drums add to the depth of the Hard Rock ballad as the chorus complements for a heaviness. Breathtaking, the song ends as it began with a soft soloing guitar, and, just like that, Dust dissipates.

Mark Tremonti has proven his love and passion for creating music over the past two plus decades. Many believed that Dust would end up a B-side album because of its close release to Cauterize, but in reality, it stands strong on its own. If one thing is for certain, Tremonti has not sounded better vocally or musically. Thus far, Tremonti has built a name as one of today’s top guitarists with providing his vocals usually as back up. However, Dust proves that, vocally, Tremonti has truly pushed and proved himself as a unique and strong lead singer. The album may just be Tremonti’s best album to date, providing the heaviest musical and lyrical content, not to mention delivery. CrypticRock gives Dust 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Tue May 03, 2016 7:20 am
by ToNsOFuN88
I don't understand why people in these reviews keep calling Tore My Heart Out a ballad. It's just a slower tempo hard rock song.

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Tue May 03, 2016 9:35 am

Renown guitarist Mark Tremonti makes his return this year with brand new album Dust. Having created music from the nineties with Creed, before deciding to expand his musical vocabulary with Alter Bridge. Giving way to a more instrumental aspect of the mans playing whilst showcasing his brilliant chops the time has come for yet another evolution. Releasing the acclaimed Cauterize just last year Tremonti is back before the Dust has settled.

Returning sooner than anticipated the guitarist once again delves into solo territory with the release of new album Dust. Rooted in Metal Tremonti is known for his classic licks but less known is his vocal ability. Ramping up the pace the now singer showcases his pipes. With emphasis put on solid song writing the likes of “The Cage” see instrumental widdling put on the back burner and instead focuses on the art of the song itself. Creating fluctuating yet well placed vocal harmonies brings a fantastic sense of melody to the songs. Whilst also ensuring the man’s identity remains imprinted on the guitar characteristics.

Joined once again by long time friends Garret Whitlock on drums, Eric Friedman and Wolfgang Van Halen on bass the foursome deliver groove without sacrificing melody. Taking a leaf out of Alter Bridge memories to create the nostalgia inducing title track “Dust” shows just how far Tremonti’s singing has come. Working in carefully selected melodies that compliment the melancholic tone perfectly introducing simplistic but effective dynamics, culminating in a stadium sized guitar solo. Shattering the sepia contour “Betray Me” similarly showcases that the band can also be surprisingly heavy despite their emotional release.

Not quite an ode to the Hunger Games, “Catching Fire” sees once again the accessiblity in Tremonti’s vocals characterised by another well thought out chorus which despite similar blueprints are differential in their delivery. Remaining within the five minute mark each song is long enough to get its point across without overstaying its welcome. Making the likes of “Never Wrong” work their magic, despite its middle of the road Rock setting the band deliver some brilliantly crafted songs that would make fans of Cauterize blush. The next logical step Tremonti and co have expanded on their musical vocabulary enabling for a fantastic, well thought out and beautifully punctuated conversation on Dust.

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Tue May 03, 2016 7:28 pm
by austin.
How often does a "small" band get such awesome reviews?

I'm just curious, if a band is getting such high praise, why aren't they bigger? I'm asking from an unbiased opinion. Tremonti is my favorite band, I don't need more convincing, I'm just curious how such stellar music can be put out and the world no offense but not really care to catch on?

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Wed May 04, 2016 12:15 am
by ToNsOFuN88
austin. wrote:How often does a "small" band get such awesome reviews?

I'm just curious, if a band is getting such high praise, why aren't they bigger? I'm asking from an unbiased opinion. Tremonti is my favorite band, I don't need more convincing, I'm just curious how such stellar music can be put out and the world no offense but not really care to catch on?

Sign of the times. People don't want music that makes them think or feel. We are the minority in today's day and age.

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Wed May 04, 2016 1:57 am
by chtimixeur
@austin : stellar is a big word.
My guess is that his music is a bit too formulatic to really catch on with the masses.
The US modern rock radio format is already oversaturated, and even though the riffs are good, his music isn't original enough to make a big impact.

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Thu May 05, 2016 12:33 am
by Fish Tacos
chtimixeur wrote:@austin : stellar is a big word.
My guess is that his music is a bit too formulatic to really catch on with the masses.
The US modern rock radio format is already oversaturated, and even though the riffs are good, his music isn't original enough to make a big impact.

Honestly I don't think it's that at all. If a band like Halestorm can make it, Tremonti definitely can. In my mind it boils down to PR / touring, the way your anticipated demographic is receiving what you're putting out, and partially a little bit on luck.

I think Tremonti usually struggles with the middle one. A lot of people seem to always anticipate harder material from him but are dissatisfied with the melodic core. Seems to work better in reception for bands like Trivium, which I know Tremonti co-headlined with which was smart.

Re: DUST Media Reviews

Posted: Thu May 05, 2016 9:34 am
3.5/5 Review:

If you scoff at the saying ‘money can’t buy happiness’, just listen to the music of Mark Tremonti. As a founding member of both multi-million selling post-grunge outfit Creed and arena headliners Alter Bridge, the guitarist is unlikely to plead poverty any time soon. Nevertheless, this latest offering once again finds the tortured guitar hero purging his demons in a maelstrom of brutal, melodic and cathartic heaviness.

‘Dust’ - the third effort from an outfit who started life as a Tremonti solo project before swiftly morphing into a proper band - was actually written and recorded at the same time as 2015’s ‘Cauterize’. The songs from were divided into two separate records based on which tracks – without adhering to any thematic unity – functioned best as complete bodies of work.

Far from being reheated leftovers, ‘Dust’ matches its predecessor’s menacing class stride for stride, and although Tremonti’s wheel remains steadfastly free of design modifications, fans who aren’t expecting reinvention will be delighted by these impressively forged tracks and the explosive and cultured fretwork that powers them.

From the ball breaking My Last Mistake to bludgeoning bombardment of Betray Me and eerie Once Dead, the album is built on the kind of ferocious drop-tuned riffage that will give your Take That-loving neighbours nightmares. Both The Cage and Never Wrong spit out electrifying hard rock licks atop a tornado of instrumental belligerence.

No one could ever accuse Alter Bridge of being a soft rock act, but with his side band Tremonti pushes further towards the thrashier end of the grunge-metal spectrum, incorporating the weapons grade bass drumming of Garrett Whitlock alongside Wolfgang Van Halen’s seismic bass to create a pulverising rhythm section.

In spite of that colossal wall of angst Tremonti remains a sucker for melody and dynamism, spicing things up with tempo and mood changes that, along with monster sized hooks, make for a deceptively accessible sound. Take end of days anthem Catching Fire, with its satanic hovercraft intro leading to a classic Metallica sprint and fire-spitting chorus before breaking down and unleashing enough thrashy venom to shatter your eardrums.

His crystal clear, icy vocals also create a sharp tunefulness, and although not as spectacular as Myles Kennedy he’s much more grounded and soulful than Scott Stapp’s over-earnest Eddie Vedder impersonations. The title track and Unable To See are texturally rich, lighter-waving slices of pain-made-epic, with his emotionally intense and melodic delivery packing a spine-tingling sense of exorcism.

It’s nice to know that after all the success and acclaim Tremonti’s edges haven’t softened. He may need to shake up this formula in future as there’s a feeling of repetition over the band’s three albums, but for anyone who needs an outlet for heartbreak, misery, betrayal and revenge, ‘Dust’ is the soundtrack to your salvation.