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‘House of Insanity’ is the fourth full length solo release from Chris Caffery, a man who has so many fingers in so many pies he must have three hands! The supporting cast on this release consists of Paul LaPlaca on keys and guitar, John Macaluso on drums and Nick Douglas on bass. The album opener is 'Seasons Change' and, as you would no doubt expect it features some excellent guitar work. It's quite a melodic track and the backing vocals have decent harmonies but, on the first listen, Caffery's vocals are a tad raw sounding. However, on subsequent plays, I got used to them and they're actually okay although they may be an acquired taste for some! The title track follows and is a fairly average track with some insane laughter here and there which is a bit off putting. Next up is 'I Won't Know' which is quite a strong track and that has Caffery sound almost like Dave Mustaine in places. The rather bizzarely titled 'The Fleas' is the next track and is good musically but has weird lyrics to match the title. There are thirteen titles on this release, which represents good value. Of the tracks not already mentioned, there's a mixture of up tempo rockers such as 'Big Brother', more mid paced cuts like 'Backs to the Wall', which features some excellent acoustic guitar work, and 'No Matter What' which has an really meaty chugging riff as it's backbone, and the occasional ballad, for example 'Winter in Hamburg' which seems to be lyrically autobiographical and which builds nicely and has a superb guitar solo as well. There's also a cover of Bob Marley's 'Get Up, Stand Up' which Caffery radically reworks. You’re probably thinking that can't possibly work but it's actually rather good. This a good album, the strong points of which are undoubtedly the guitar of Caffery and the muscianship of his band members. Some of the tracks are really very good and, once you become accustomed to Caffery's 'unpolished' vocal delivery, there is plenty here to enjoy.
AFM Records
Review by Dave Uphill
13th July 2009
1) Seasons Change
2) House of Insanity
3) I Won't Know
4) The Fleas
5) Madonna
6) Big Brother
7) Back's to the Wall
8) Solitaire
9) I'm Sorry; 10) Shame
11) Winter in Hamburg
12) No Matter What
13) Get Up, Stand Up!
"...once you become accustomed to Caffery's 'unpolished' vocal delivery, there is plenty here to enjoy."