Snakecharmer – Snakecharmer


Review by Rich Ward

There has been a lot of expectations around the release of the debut album from Snakecharmer. Just over year ago they were gigging selectively as the unfortunately named ‘Monsters Of British Rock’ playing to the ever popular nostalgia and tribute band scene, so news of a new album of fresh music certainly piqued a lot of interest. After all, Micky Moody and Neil Murray have worked together several times since their heady Whitesnake days and have produced some fine material with the Company Of Snakes and M3. With Thunder’s Harry James completing the rhythm section, ex-Wishbone Ash guitarist Laurie Wisefield complementing Moody on guitar, Adam Wakeman on keyboards and vocals supplied by Heartland’s Chris Ousey, the pedigree of the band is not in doubt.

Clearly, they are playing on their ‘Whitesnake’ heritage with band name and album cover, but  those expecting an album of pre ‘1987’ clones in their signature blues-rock style will be disappointed. Although there is evidence of all members history within the album. On first listen, it is apparent that the album leans much more towards the AOR genre. In part down to Ousey’s presence, but also the keyboard style and manner of production. This is especially evident in tracks like ‘Stand Up’ and ‘Turn Of The Screw’. With this approach, this should be an album that appeals to a broader audience and fans of the likes of Foreigner and Journey.

Opener ‘My Angel’ starts the album with just acoustic guitars and vocals before launching into the full song. A real bombastic uptempo rocker. ‘Accident Prone’ is one of the tracks more reminiscent of a Whitesnake tune, with its’ insistent bass line, some well placed hammond organ from Adam Wakeman, guitar harmonies and superb vocals over the top. It’s no wonder that this track is in heavy rotation on Planet Rock’s current schedule.‘To The Rescue’ features some of Micky Moody’s trademark slide guitar. ‘Falling Leaves’ is the ballad of the album and ends just after six minutes with some scorching guitar work. It’s certainly one that will translate well live and I’ll look forward to hearing it later in the year.

‘Guilty As Charged’ is probably the most ‘Whitesnake’ song on the album and bridges the gap between the old and new nicely. It starts with some tasty riffage and hammond, and develops into a two guitar solo, the first drenched with wah wah and followed with a slide solo. Superb stuff.

There are no duff tracks on this album, but at the same time there isn’t any one track that immediately leaps out as exceptional. Consequently, this appears to be an album that will be more rewarding with repeated listens. This is an album that will not only sit comfortably within any classic rock fans’ collection, it will be one that gets revisited on a regular basis. Oh, and did I mention it sounds infinitely better LOUD!

 7 out of 10SNAKECHARMER cover


  1. My Angel
  2. Accident Prone
  3. To The Rescue
  4. Falling Leaves
  5. A Little Rock And Roll
  6. Turn Of The Screw
  7. Smoking Gun
  8. Stand Up
  9. Guilty As Charged
  10. Nothing To Lose
  11. Cover Me In You