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W.E.T. - "W.E.T." (CD)

W.E.T. - "W.E.T." CD cover image

"W.E.T." track listing:

1. Invincible (3:50)
2. One Love (3:55)
3. Brothers In Arms (4:46)
4. Comes Down Like Rain (4:41)
5. Running From The Heartache (4:26)
6. I'll Be There (4:43)
7. Damage Is Done (3:25)
8. Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is (3:13)
9. One Day At A Time (5:02)
10. Just Go (4:24)
11. My Everything (3:18)
12. If I fall (6:08)

Reviewed by on September 12, 2010

"'For the most part W.E.T. avoids the cheesy lyrics and over the top gestures that defined the genre in the 80's, but in the same token those who are diehard Bon Jovi or Whitesnake fans will feel right at home listening to this CD.'"

It can get very confusing when more than one band shares the same name, and arguably even more so when the new band name is an anagram for the old bands from which the members come. So rather than dwell on the name W.E.T., I’ll simply say this band is the culmination of three melodic rock bands, namely Work Of Art, Eclipse, and Talisman. The self-titled debut combines the best of all three, and in the case of Jeff Scott Soto’s vocals, possibly even surpasses expectations.

I hate to use the term hair metal to describe W.E.T.’s album, because with the exception of a few Poison-esque guitar riffs spattered throughout, this really sounds more like classic anthemic stadium rock. For the most part W.E.T. avoids the cheesy lyrics and over the top gestures that defined the genre in the 80's, but in the same token those who are diehard Bon Jovi or Whitesnake fans will feel right at home listening to this CD.

Sure there are synths, but they’re tasteful. There are also gang vocals, but they’re not distracting. And there’s the formulaic breakdown in each track, but they’re not repetitive. The only real problem W.E.T. struggles with is tempo. With the exception of "Just Go," one of the finer tracks on the album, this isn’t anywhere close to power metal speed. This is toe-tapping, sing along hard rock, but occasionally the transitions from chorus to breakdown and back again get bumpy. Sometimes it doesn’t work at all, like in "Comes Down Like Rain," which starts out as an acoustic sounding ballad. This one boasts some incredible lyrics and beauty, but the equally inspiring breakdown just seems like an anomaly. Individually these could make two awesome songs, but together it just doesn’t mesh.

The other criticism I have for "W.E.T." is that maybe because it is so true to the genre, there are lots of moments where you hear a familiar melody or riff – when the name of another song is suddenly on the tip of your tongue but you just can’t place it. I’ll call these moments, and throughout the album you’ll catch a few Quiet Riot, Poison, Bon Jovi and Survivor moments. Then again, if you enjoy "W.E.T." you’re probably also a fan of these bands.

Like all good melodic rock albums, "W.E.T." closes things out with a bang. Possibly the best track, "If I Fall" is a superb, epic, 80’s inspired ballad. Enter piano, hard rock guitars, anthemic vocals, and you’ve got a great closer to an album that may not be a classic, but is certainly a fun ride.

Highs: Good stadium rock, 80’s inspired sing along music.

Lows: Rough tempo transitions from chorus to breakdown.

Bottom line: A solid anthemic rock album that mostly avoids the pitfalls of the genre.

Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls
3.5 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)