Hot off the Press

Unbreakable | Knockout

by Mark Allen
– Senior Columnist —

UnbreakableA one-line review of this German hard rock band would read: Unbreakable sound like the Scorpions. However, a writer who dared submit such a succinct review would probably find his fingers smashed by an irate editor. So in order to avoid fractured phalanges, additional word count is required.

This is as close as you can get to the Scorpions without listening to the actual Scorps. The mimicry appears deliberate, as Unbreakable not only cue their name from the title of a Scorpions record, but also tapped former Scorpions drummer Herman Rarebell to pen lyrics and produce. Surely paying homage to that classic Scorpions sound was intentional, right? Hard to picture all those components in the mix and the band bewilderedly scratching their heads and muttering, “Uh, why does our album sound like the Scorpions?”

So yeah, if you like the Scorps, this one is pretty solid. If you don’t like the Scorps … please consider your membership to the hard rock club revoked. From the unabashed ‘80s metal influence to the blazing guitar work to the vocalist’s accented delivery to the riff-centric song structure, nearly everything about this release is reminiscent of the Scorpions. Unbreakable may lack their own identity, but for the most part they do a bang-up job of honoring their rock ‘n’ roll idols.

With a vintage sound and time-honored (or clichéd, if you want to be petty) lyrical tropes firmly intact (well, “Crazy Cat Lady” may not exactly be your standard ‘80s cheese-fest, but it is amusingly loaded with naughty innuendo, putting it firmly in the spirit of the era), the band just wants to rock you like a hurric—well, you know.

Aside from a couple weak ballads, the songs are all revved up, fist-pumping hard rock. The first single, “Rock the Nightlife,” not only rocks your face off, but comes equipped with mega-catchiness as well. It’s like the chorus is constructed from fish hooks that snag your ears, reel you in, and refuse to let go. Even better is “Obsession,” ramping up the sonic pleasure with a razor-sharp riff and explosive chorus graced with massive backing vocals, which means the track is all that and a bag of chips, as the cool kids used to say.

Bottom line, this album should satisfy most any ‘80s hard rock fan. Yes, the Scorpions worship is more obvious than a naked man’s erection, but does that really matter? If a girl who looked exactly like Megan Fox crawled into your bed one night, would you kick her out because she wasn’t actually Megan Fox? Hell, no. Same principle applies here. Unbreakable don’t quite score a knockout punch with this debut, but they’re certainly not down for the count either.

Genre: Hard Rock

Al Crespo (vocals)
Martin Ries (guitars)
Pascal Alles (guitars, backing vocals)
Alex Ries (drums)
Lukas Mittler (bass)

Track Listing
1. Knockout
2. Rock the Nightlife
3. Come Back to Me
4. Bad Blood
5. Obsession
6. Crazy Cat Lady
7. In Your Heart
8. Good Times
9. Back to the Roots
10. Game of Life
11. We are Dreamers

Label: Dark Star Records


Hardrock Haven rating: 8/10