Hardly any other hard rock band lives as much from the success of a single album as Skid Row. The self-titled debut from 1989 is considered one of the great genre classics with hits like "18 And Life", "Youth Gone Wild" and "I Remember You".
The second album "Slave to The Grind" from 1991 could just keep up. Since then, Skid Row haven't released anything like it. With a new singer and a new producer, "The Gang's All Here" should finally work.
Erik Grönwall is the name of the fifth officially documented Skid Row frontman. The Swede was two years old when the New Jersey band released their debut. Grönwall is known to hard rock fans from the Swedish group H.E.A.T, for which he was the lead singer from 2010 to 2020. Grönwall's entry into Skid Row has a nice history: As the winner of the Swedish talent show "Idol", he had impressed the jury in 2009 with "18 And Life".
Also on "The Gang's All Here" the 34-year-old with the wide vocal range shows that - unlike some of his predecessors - he can easily fill the big shoes of the original Skid Row singer Sebastian Bach. In fact, the quintet around the two main songwriters Rachel Bolan (bass) and Dave "Snake" Sabo (guitar), which counts as a third founding member Scotti Hill (guitar), hasn't sounded so much like themselves in decades.
When band members say the producer got the best out of them, it's mostly promotional talk. With "The Gang's All Here" you believe it. Because under the aegis of veteran Nick Raskulinecz (Foo Fighters, Rush, Korn), Skid Row have produced some really good, energetic hard rock tracks. The title track and "Not Dead Yet" are two of several catchy tunes.
With the riff-heavy "Time Bomb" you can already see the fists of the audience shooting upwards at the upcoming concerts. With "October's Song" there is also a nice ballad. Grönwall masters the hard tones and the soulful singing equally. Skid Row found themselves with Grönwall and Raskulinecz. A new "18 And Life" or "I Remember You" was of course not to be expected. But no one would have expected the US hard rockers to present their best album since 1991.