By Colonel Angus

I have always had a soft spot for Lenny Wolf and Kingdom Come.  Their first self-titled record in 1988 got both equal good and bad press.  Many people enjoyed it but critic panned the band for sounding like Led Zeppelin.  While I hear some similarities, they were unfairly labeled as “Led clones” and many didn’t give them a second chance.  I, on the other hand, enjoyed the first record and aside from Perpetual, have liked all of his releases.  Every few years there is new album from Kingdom Come and I make sure to get a copy.

Steamhammer/SPV is releasing this one just as they did with "Rendered Waters" back in 2011.   Difference this time is we are getting a whole disk of new material instead of just a few songs.   " Outlier" does have the same band as last time and while they do a good job, none of them puts in a mind blowing performance.  Guitarist Eric Forster along with bassist Frank Binke and drummer Nader Rahy all do well but the main focus is on band leader Wolf.  He possesses one of those voices that is unmistakably his and all he has to do is utter a few syllables and you know it’s Lenny Wolf.  Although he doesn’t scream as much as he did on earlier records, I have to say that his voice is still really strong.

There are no real surprises on "Outlier".  If you have been a fan for a while, you know what you are getting and this new record is no different.  There is a certain style that Wolf employs on all his tracks that give it a grand sound.  Opener “God Does Not Sing Our Song” is a perfect example of a style that he has been utilizing since "In Your Face".  Even songs that  are more uptempo like “The Trap Is Alive” are reminiscent of “Can’t Deny” off of "Hands Of Time".  “Skip The Cover And Feel” has a Led Zeppelin feel but certainly does not warrant a rip-off label.  He takes elements of Zeppelin and makes them his own.  “Don’t Want You To Wait” and “When Colors Break The Grey” have slightly weird intros but once the song kicks in, they are traditional Kingdom Come tracks.  Like I mentioned earlier, there is nothing earth shattering on "Outlier" but it is a good release and fits nicely with the rest of the catalogue.