· KUKO DE KOBRA - RETURN TO SPLENDOUR (GYR198) ·
· (FEATURING MARTIN J. ANDERSEN ON GUITAR) ·

::T R A C K S::

01. OCEAN WIDE
02. CURSE OF THE ELEPHANTOM
03. SILENCE THE KILLER
04. BED
05. RETURN TO SPLENDOUR
06. BE, LEAF
07. RIFFHANGER
08. SAVE OUR ASHES FOR THE FIRE
09. LONE BIRD ON A LONG WIRE
10. NEUROTIC
11. ECHO OF STEVENSON
12. REMEMBER


FORMAT: Audio CD / 4 PANEL WALLET
GYR198 - $13.99

Awesome studio disc by this way-kool heavy rock band from Denmark featuring John Gamma Sharling on lead vocals & Martin J. Andersen (Blindstone) on guitar. Includes 12 songs of outstanding, excellent, dynamic, melodic, minor riff heaviness that lands with endless amounts of originality, depth, maturity and excellence. On "Return To Splendour" the Danish heavy rockers known as Kuko De Kobra have produced & delivered a world-class, creative musical document that rides high with multiple levels of deep, mind-expanding, guitar heavy, sonic "ear candy".

Fans of the Grooveyard will be very familiar with Martin J. Andersen; an authentic, kick-ass, modern day heavy guitar rock hero of world-class proportions. Andersen is best known for his stellar guitar playing & music in Blindstone and with Kuko De Kobra, Mr. Andersen digs in deep with his serious brand of supreme, bad-ass, blues-based, heavy six string mojo. John Gamma Sharling is an amazing, talented, powerful singer rock vocal god who is the brainchild behind the music of Kuko De Kobra. Sharling is a creative musical visionary with a strong sense of melodic harmony. The "Return To Spendour" disc is an essential, riff heavy, guitar rocker that is Highly recommended to fans of Chris Cornell & Soundgarden, Audioslave, Dizzy Mizz Lizzy & Tim Christensen, Alain Johannes & Eleven, The Night Flight Orchestra and to people who dig & appreciate deep, artistic heavy rock music.


MP3 Sample Clips

01. OCEAN WIDE
02. CURSE OF THE ELEPHANTOM
03. SILENCE THE KILLER
04. BED
05. RETURN TO SPLENDOUR
06. BE, LEAF
07. RIFFHANGER
08. SAVE OUR ASHES FOR THE FIRE
09. LONE BIRD ON A LONG WIRE
10. NEUROTIC
11. ECHO OF STEVENSON
12. REMEMBER

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· reviews ·

A few months ago this magazine published an interview with Blindstone guitarist/vocalist Martin J. Andersen from Denmark. Martin told us that he was involved with various bands of which Kuko De Kobra was one of them. With the emphasis on ‘was’ as Martin decided to leave that outfit but not before a new record entitled ‘Return To Splendour’ was in the can and very recently released by American guitar rock label Grooveyard. Although a new record? That is not really accurate as this release is more a compilation by this Danish band who in the past already released three albums. The best and most prolific songs have been picked and in some cases reworked plus a new song added to form this twelve track record featuring Andersen on lead guitar, singer/bass player John Gamma Sharling and multi-instrumentalist Martin Pagaard Wolff (here on drums, bass and guitar) plus a bunch of guests of which some might have been involved in the earlier days of Kuko De Kobra. Several songs have that signature Martin J. Andersen guitar sound blasting out of your speakers. I was not really familiar with Kuko De Kobra but I like most of what I hear on ‘Return To Splendour’. This band has groove, can be very heavy or at moments also mellow and traditional but you can be sure that in all songs the guitar is extremely dominant and prominent. The music is most of the time melodic yet heavy. When you hear "Echo Of Stevenson" with is slow grinding riff and extreme heavy guitar work and a bit later listen to the semi-acoustic track "Remember" it seems like two different outfits are at work but the binding factor is the voice John Gamma Sharling who manages to put his stamp on the proceedings as does Andersen. The variation in the material is one of the key points on this record that further has some really cool songs like "Be, Leaf" (very melancholy). All in all a very nice guitar rock record with kick, melody and good songs.

Michel van de Moosdijk / Headbangers Lifestyle (December 2020)
 


In Denmark this formation has apparently already made a very good name for itself, but in this country you have sometimes only heard very little or nothing of KUKO DE KOBRA. Founded and run by guitar wizard Martin J. Andersen and his singing colleague John Gamma Sharling, the troupe has been serving a balanced mix of blues-infiltrated classic and hard rock, radio-compatible rock and rock that is difficult to sound after the nineties, for a long time a good dose of grunge.

The gentlemen also seem to be perfectly attuned to each other and let us know on what is now the third long run of their company that they now manage to serve catchy tunes. There are a few of them on "Return To Splendor", regardless of how different the tracks are stylistically. However, they all produce a coherent picture, as any solo escapades are dispensed with as well as any experiments.

Another common denominator of the 12 songs is the guitar work of the string stretcher, who is also active as a solo artist, and represents a more than solid foundation. In some passages his instrument sounds tough and earthy, but sometimes also almost dreamy-melancholy and emotionally charged. Since John is also able to use his vocal cords in a very varied and flexible way, varied and entertaining listening pleasure is provided. Unfortunately, not all numbers have mandatory hooks, but at least a large number of them.

With this it turns out to be irrelevant whether it goes to the point with an official Seattle list, as in the opener 'Ocean Wide', rather straight, shirt-sleeved rock in traditional style is served, or the band in rather calm material launches like 'Be, Leaf'. All of these tracks find their way directly into long-term memory.

And even when KUKO DE KOBRA serves harsh and groovy food, it happens several times in catchy form. You can listen to it in 'Silence The Killer', the lively 'Riffhanger' and the brutal 'Echo Of Stevenson' reminiscent of BLACK LABEL SOCIEY.

In short, as a lover of guitar-dominated sounds one should definitely have heard KUKO DE KOBRA!

Walter Scheurer / Power Metal (January 2021)
 




 


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