Frost Bite - Carousel (Pulse Records) 1997
Early Jack Frost isn't that far removed from modern day Jack Frost bands like Seven Witches and Metalium. This is pure heavy metal; crunchy guitar riffs, powerful, clean vocals, and smokin' guitar leads. That's what real metal is all about. There are a few mellower moments on this disc, like the title track, which is a ballad, and the melancholy "More Visible In Red", although this song picks up to become another heavy riff fest as well. For the most part, even during the faster, heavier moments the band manages to maintain a sense of melody. Songs like "Monster", "Different World", "Leaving So Soon" and "Someday" are all skull crushers, but are also well-written and memorable. The production on this album is very minimal and dry. It almost has a live-in-the-studio feel to it. There are not tons of layered guitars or vocals, nor an abundance of studio effects, but just a straight forward sound, probably not unlike what the band might sound like live. However, I would have liked the bass guitar and bass drum to be a little more prominant in the mix. I can imagine with a fuller production, like most of the Seven Witches material, this CD would have been even better. As it stand, "Carousel" sounds like it was recorded in the 1980's, which may have been what the band was going for. It's hard not to compare to Frost's more recent releases with Seven Witches, but the fact is these early recordings I am sure were much more limited in budget. This minor complain about production aside, "Carousel" is a very enjoyable CD and certainly an interesting look into the history of a man who will surely become one of the legends of metal.
This is a solo album in the classic sense as it features a range of styles as well as a large host of notable guest musicians including Harry Hess (Seven Witches), Rob Rock (Axel Rudi Pell, Impellitteri, Angelica, Driver, Warrior, among others), Jack Emrick (Life after Death), Bobby Lucas (ex-Seven Witches), Joe Comeau (Liege Lord, Annihilator, Overkill), Steve Braun, Mike Duda (W.A.S.P.), Joey Vera (Fates Warning, Armored Saint, Engine, Anthrax), Johnny Dee (Doro, Britny Fox), Gonzo (Armored Saint) and Billy Childs (Britny Fox). While Frost is obviously a metalhead through and through, he shows his variety of metal influences on this disc. Much of the material has that heavy power metal feel that bands like Metalium and Seven Witches also have. "Stay", "The Chase" and "Brotherhood of Lies" alone will have any self-respecting metal-head banging along. Ex-Annihilator vocalist Joe Comeau tears it up on "The Chase." However, songs like "What's Left" and "The Man that I Am" are far more melodic. This particular song could have been a big hit for Skid Row in the early 90's. "Nippin' at Your Ear" is a short guitar shred-fest. "Fight Fire With Fire" is a metallic take on Kansas. "Slow Burn" features consumate vocalist Rob Rock, who seems slightly at odds in this particular song. The disc finishes off with a hilarious take on Ratt's classic hit. When they got to the chorus I almost fell over laughing. Did they say, "lack of communication, whack off"? I think they did. LOL! Overall, a very enjoyable solo disc from Frost. Picked up this CD for only $5 from TheEndRecords.com
Frost - Out in the Cold (Mausoleum) 2005
Solo disc number two for Jack Frost. As with his last solo project, Jack has invited a host of known musicians to work with him. There are guest appearances on the album by: Alan Techio (Hades, Watchtower, Seven Witches), Jeff Martin (Racer X, Badlands), Neil Turbin (ex-Anthrax) and Paul Shortino (Rough Cutt) on vocals, Mike Duda (W.A.S.P.), Mike Lepond (Symphony X, ex-Heathens Rage) and Joey Vera (Armored Saint, Fates Warning, Seven Witches) on bass guitar and a couple of drummers of which Patrick Johansson (Yngwie Malmsteen) is the most known. With so many different artists you might think this album would be a bit disjointed, but that is really not the case. The first three tracks start the disc off right. All three are riff heavy tracks with excellent vocals and a crunchy guitar tone. Both Turbin and Techio have great voices that work well for this style. Jeff Martin gives a great vocal performance on the metal track "Covered In Blood". "Passage To The Classical Side" is a beautiful ballad featuring unknown singer Dave Toth. "Peter & Me" is more of a hard rock song with a 1970's vibe, not unlike something you might hear from Nazareth. There are four covers on this album, all of which are outside the "metal" label. 'Hold On Loosely' is the .38 Special classic featuring Jack on vocals, a decent version of Foreigner's "Cold As Ice" and the excellent April Wine hit, "Sign Of The Gipsy Queen". Personally I think Jack does this song justice. "Head First" is an excellent cover of The Baby's classic. "Out in the Cold" is a nice mixture of hard rock and metal. It's not quite as metalic as Jack's Seven Witches, nor is it as dark as his Bronx Casket Company. I suppose this is the reason for a solo album, to release stuff outside the range of his bands. In that respect, "Out in the Cold" is a nice mixture of hard rock and heavy metal.