traxter - rock n race
TRAXTER
Rock N’ Race
Independent
1991

A Traxter is a brand of ATV. And a band, it seems. Upon first look at this CD, visions of cheeseballs danced in my head. The cartoonish artwork, the late hair-metal look of the band, the independent label. . .heck, just the title “Rock N’ Race” almost doomed this CD to the Hardly Ever Listen To section of my personal collection. But, everything’s worth at least one listen, so I gave it a shot. Rather glad I did, really.

This is what most would classify as “hair metal”, although that label has been used in utter contempt from those who don’t really know better. Yes, this release does fall in that category, although it’s hardly second rate playing here. The first track, “Holy Rockin'”, once you get past the title, reminded me of early L.A. Guns. Upon the second track, “Mr. Love”, that comparison melted away to more of a classic Dokken sound, reminiscent of the ‘Back For The Attack’ days. Wow. The guitars are great, the vocals just raw enough (okay, possibly the vocalist for Kix filling in with Dokken. . .that’s closer to the sound), the production really good for an independent release. . .and the lyrics? The same blatant style of probably Fear Not or early nineties Guardian. Take, for instance, “Honest Report”:

I know a love seeks out the souls of men
This kind of love there seems to be no end
Sacrificing a dear one on a cross
And I’m hungry for love, Jesus kind of love
Love around the world

Sure, there are shots at regular every day hurdles, like drugs (“J.S.N.”) and alienation (“Mr. Love”, “Come To Open Arms”, “Turn And Face”), but mostly this falls under the classic Blatant Christian Metal title. . .it’s worth a listen, if you’re into the heavy metal of past yore. . .

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