Locked & Loaded

Voodoo Circle

For VOODOO CIRCLE's sixth album, "Locked & Loaded," band leader Alex Beyrodt has reassembled the […]
By kenn staub
February 12, 2021
Voodoo Circle - Locked & Loaded album cover

For VOODOO CIRCLE's sixth album, "Locked & Loaded," band leader Alex Beyrodt has reassembled the line-up from the groups second release, 2011's "Broken Heart Syndrome." Released January 2021 "Locked & Loaded" finds the quartet from Germany playing a deeply melodic hybrid of hard rock and metal for fans of WHITESNAKE, DEEP PURPLE, RAINBOW, and YNGWIE MALMSTEEN. And in this respect, VOODOO CIRCLE delivers, as the album is almost an hour of guitar-driven, classic rock that will feel aurally comfortable to fans of the aforementioned acts.

Throughout the album, Beyrodt is given room to show his six string dexterity, cranking out classically wailing, at times attitudinally sassy, guitar work. Bassist Mat Sinner and drummer Markus Kullman do an excellent job of providing the foundation for Beyrodt to do his thing. And though Beyrodt's solos are a highlight of almost every track, he also demonstrates the ability to play well with others, combining with Sinner and Kullman to lay down some toe-tapping funky grooves, such as on the songs "Locked & Loaded," "Devil With An Angel Smile," and "Trouble In The Moonlight."

WHITESNAKE is evoked on the ferocious opener, "Flesh & Bone," and "Eyes Full Of Tears," which, if you are of a certain age, harkens back to the 1980s and slow dancing in high school. David Readman's singing is soulful on "Eyes Full Of Tears," as it is on the bluesy, ZEPPLIN-influenced "Magic Woman Chile." The blues and yearning are again given their due on the penultimate track, "This Song Is For You," which I found mesmerizing, getting lost in its mood.

Though "Locked & Loaded" really offers nothing that hasn't been heard before, I don't believe its purpose was to break new ground. That being noted, many of these hook-laden tracks, which offer the listener a degree of familiarity, do feature subtle stylistic shifts that will keep even the most jaded interested. In sum, "Locked & Loaded" is an exquisitely played, well produced, big, bold slab of arena-ready classic rock.

9 / 10

Almost Perfect








"Locked & Loaded" Track-listing:

1. Flesh & Bone
2. Wasting Time
3. Magic Woman Chile
4. Locked & Loaded
5. Devil With An Angel Smile
6. Straight For The Heart
7. Eyes Full Of Tears
8. Devil's Cross
9. Trouble In The Midnight
10. This Song Is For You
11. Children Of The Revolution

Voodoo Circle Lineup:

David Readman - Lead Vocals
Alex Beyrodt - Guitar/Vocals
Mat Sinner - Bass/Vocals
Markus Kullman - Drums

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