Enuff Z'Nuff - Dissonance (Limited Edition) 2008

Dissonance – def: A simultaneous combination of tones conventionally accepted as being in a state of unrest and needing completion.

Its not often I have to resort to a dictionary to find out the meaning of an album title but for those of you who, like me, need a bit of help, there ya go. Okay now we’ve got that out of the way, is ‘Dissonance’ in a state of unrest and needing completion?

Well, there’s certainly a few unknown details about this album. Maybe all will become a bit clearer when it’s finally released. Hopefully that’s going to be very soon as this is a real gem, possibly Enuff Z’Nuff’s best album since Paraphernalia (where’s that dictionary again?).

The other unknowns are will the final title of ‘Dissonance’ remain or will it be ‘Album of the Year’ that it was once billed as? Will the forthcoming release have more tracks? Will we eventually get to find out who played on which tracks?

The ‘Dissonance’ CD was on sale at Rocklahoma 2008 but its kind of already had one incarnation in the form of ‘Lost in Vegas’ (I know it’s all getting a bit confusing here with all these titles) but the band wasn’t happy with some of the production arrangements on that leaked version and so thankfully they’ve decided to put something slightly different out.

‘Dissonance’ has five of the songs which were on ‘Lost in Vegas’ and a further four new songs. Because of the lack of detail on the sleeve information, it’s a bit unclear which songs have been re-recorded and what artists feature.

However we do know that the album features Jake E Lee (Ozzy Osbourne and Badlands) so hopefully some of his fan base will cross over to hear what he sounds like alongside Enuff Z’Nuff and at the same time bring some well deserved attention to the band. I say that because Enuff Z’Nuff truly deserve their place in the rock hall of fame, my god they’ve worked hard enough for it over the years, with numerous albums, line-up changes and the sad loss of two members along the way.

Drums on the album come courtesy of Vinnie Castaldo although at one point former Guns N’ Roses drummer Steven Adler had allegedly laid down some of the tracks. Adler also jammed with the band during Rocklahoma.

It seems the ‘core’ of the band that is Chip Z’Nuff and Donnie Vie have put their differences behind them for now and the time apart seems to have done them the world of good.

As mentioned the band played Rocklahoma this year with drummer Randi Scott (the Black Mollys) and CJ Szuter (of the Szuters and Donnie’s other band LA Smogg). They’ll also be appearing at Rock the Bayou soon and the fans will no doubt be hoping that the recent public resurgence will lead to a tour. As for who’ll play guitars, well, your guess is as good as mine but perhaps CJ’s style is more appropriate to the EZN sound.

So let’s put all the ifs, buts and who’s aside for a moment and focus on a few of the songs. Of the new songs, the title track and opener Dissonance is a superb - catchy riffs and a harder edge sound than some of the other songs on the album, maybe thanks to Jake E Lee’s input.

Joni Lynn has a slightly retrospective blues feel to it and wouldn’t have seemed out of place on Enuff Z’Nuff’s album 1985. The stand out track for me has to be Roll Away which has great haunting vocals from the start and it’s the best ballad Enuff Z’Nuff have put out in some time, trust me it’ll captivate true fans from the first few lines and it hooks incredibly well back to the chorus.

The rest of the album has everything fans will need from a new EZN release, melodic tunes, great harmonies and a great depth to the production. Despite some of the unknowns (and I admit that might just be me), I strongly urge you to put this one on your purchase list for this year as if you liked their older stuff then this is going to bring a smile back to your face.

by Grant W.

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