Gotthard - Silver

Gotthard Silver cover
Average: 5.1 (116 votes)
“Silver” is the 3rd album with Nic Maeder following original singer’s Steve Lee’s sad and tragic freak accident that cost him his life and it finds Gotthard still largely unable to quite display the knack for coming up with hits that much of their Lee led era had after a certain point. While in Maeder they’ve found a great singer and possibly someone they can relate to and they have written a bunch of really pleasant tunes with him, I can’t really think of a “defining” Maeder track, in all honesty. Only a number of pretty good ones.
“Silver”, which marks the 25th anniversary of the band’s existence, celebrates their legacy, has the bluesy rock flavor that lots of the earlier album did, imbued in its fabric – you know that Whitesnake vibe that many might imitate, but few can pull off so well, but it doesn’t manage to really shine, only to sparkle with promise of what could be, if the whole collaboration manages to get on the next level with the songwriting, where Lee’s absence is mostly felt.
“Silver River” and “Electrified” are somewhat updated exercise in 70s flavored hard rock, with “Stay With Me” being the first track that properly rocks, with that familiar mid 80s shake of the ‘Snake and Maeder channeling as much Coverdale as he possibly can.
“Beautiful” is a pleasant somewhat modern sounding rocker with a few experimentations that don’t derail it, but hardly add anything more to it.
“Everything Inside” has a more meaty riff and mingles the bands style with a harder edged 90s sort of rock without bastardizing it too much.
“Reason for This” is a nice piano laden number that feels like a sound updated Coverdale solo number, more or less, in a pleasant way.
“Not Fooling Anyone” is an honest and simple acoustic ballad, about having to play “roles”… a bit too close for comfort maybe.
“Miss Me” has a bit of a southern charm and sound about it that it manages to lace itself with and probably a shot of Bourbon somewhere in its guts. Good number.
Followed by the rather bizarre and quite forced Frankenstein piece that “Tequila Symphony No.5” is, mixing hard riffs with a bit of a weird take on Beethoven’s 5th… in a way that doesn’t quite mix.
“Why” tries the acoustic ballad formula with a twist and it’s lingering chorus, isn’t all that great.
“Only Love is Real” manages to sound a lot more true to the band’s sound and vision, despite all its grandiosity and strings.
“My Oh My” is not bad, but too close to “Mountain Mamma” for comfort…
“Blame on Me” is a bit of Purple flavored speed jam that I can’t say I disliked… it lacks a bit in the chorus department, but it’s pretty much OK otherwise…
“Walk On”, one of the two bonuses, borrows a little bit of “N.I.B’s” bass riff to build its own, so it’s a little unorthodox, in a number of ways, but not terrible all things considered.
The other one, “Customized Lovin”, has a nice idea going on for it, but it clearly feels a little underdeveloped and on the filler side, with all the trademarks there, but lacking the flair of inspiration that would lift it up.
Gotthard are kept from going under, but only manage to sound as going through the motions – at best at least having fun while do it. Until their chemistry with NM manages to really manifest in a better way and produce a tangible, danceable hit, I’m guessing their collective talents will be underutilized. I hope they can fully recover from the terrible blow they received and will be happy to witness the next chapter of their story whenever it’s due…

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