[Century Media]

On Buckcherry’s sixth album, frontman Josh Todd reveals—but doesn’t necessarily repent for—his forays into the seven deadly sins. The tattoo-laden rocker is well qualified for such narratives. Through hard-hitting guitar, trenchant vocals and sleazy lyrics, he gives depravity a sonic correlative, presenting various forms of vice as a kind of musical slideshow. Opener “Gluttony” sets the template, prefacing an album of gritty and engaging anthems to excess, and as Todd sings of a “desire that will never change,” it’s clear he won’t go square anytime soon. Though Buckcherry epitomizes thrill-seeking hard rock, there’s a hint of tragedy in Todd’s infectiously rugged voice. On such tracks as “Wrath,” the vocals convey a mood more heartfelt than hedonistic. The tempo slows down for “The Truth” and “Dreamin’ of You,” which feature melodies reminiscent of the best ’90s alt-rock. Now that Todd has confessed, one hopes he plunges back into debauchery—then heads for the studio. –Ray Cavanaugh


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