With bands not being able to get out to shows, national lockdowns have forced bands to improvise when it comes to finding that all important income; whether this has been a brand-new studio album, live streamed concerts or cover albums, bands have been desperate to stay active. Emerging from the mists of Covid19 is David Ellefson and his aptly titled ‘No Cover’ erm… cover album.
For this latest release, Ellefson has gathered a cohort of friends from the heavy metal world; not only does ‘No Cover’ boast an impressive roster of guests that includes Gus G, Dave Lombardo and Eddie Ojeda, but it also utilises Megadeth sticksman Dirk Verbeuren as well as alumni Jimmy DeGrasso, Chuck Behler. These guests, as well as the others that are far too many to mention take on classic heavy metal and hard rock tracks from the 70’s and 80’s and in all honesty, really do these songs justice. There is something here for every metal fan both young and old as Ellefson and co. drive through the eons with even the homage in the album art to Def Leppard’s ‘On Through the Night’ being enough to make any old school metal fan smile; yet these songs are more than just than the sum of their parts as these classic songs are given a huge contemporary sheen. However, as decent as these songs are, ultimately, they are just covers and a double disc at that; this means that this is a lot of time dedicated to those cover versions that would be better summed up at the end of an album as a bonus track. Looking at these musicians, they write excellent tracks year in, year out and it is a little disappointing that this is what Ellefson chose to deliver instead of original material.
Those looking to find brand new music will not find it here; however, what they will find is a double disc of decent covers that are definitely worth a listen and are a little bit of fun, but do they have any staying power? Probably not, but taken on face value, it is decent enough.