RATINGS: A = must own B = buy it C= average D = yawn F = puke

American Dog – Neanderthal
American Dog Records

Rating: A

[This review contains bad language…deal with it]

When it comes to down and dirty, in-yer-face, smells bad, greasy, grimy rock and roll no one does it better than Ohio’s American Dog.  In fact, this band was born when Ted Nugent and Lemmy from Motorhead got their sperm bank donations mixed together and deposited inside of Wendy O. Williams.  Let that one soak around in your head for a moment…okay, now back to the music!

The Dog has just released their best album.  Seriously, this band is getting better with every trip to the pound—err, studio.  This time around, on their 7th studio effort, they added another puppy to the pack.  Making his debut on the album is guitarist Vinnie Salvatore.  Vinnie had guts to leave whatever semblance of a normal life he may have had prior to joining American Dog, who are one of the most notoriously loud and dangerous bands in the Midwest! Classic Rock Revisited is glad he did, however, as a four-piece American Dog is louder and prouder than ever before.     

Vinnie may be the new guy, but we’re sure he figured out quickly that the alpha dog in this band is bassist/vocalist, and all around crazy motherfucker, Michael Hannon.  On the odd occasion Hannon does not have a bass in his hand, he has a beer!  He comes from the ashes of the almost-was hair band Salty Dog, who made a small splash, but with this band, American Dog, he makes a huge sound! Hannon, along with guitarist Steve “TURN IT THE FUCK UP” Theado and drummer Michael “Hazard” Harris have reverted back to their inner cavemen roots and created an entire album that is every bit fitting of the label ‘Neanderthal.’

Indeed, this sum-bitch rocks from the get-go.  The opening notes of “Carnivore” make Uncle Ted reach for the volume button to turn it up to 11.  Speaking of The Nuge, American Dog pay homage to the ultimate rock and roll Neanderthal by covering his tune “Dog Eat Dog” from his classic 1976 Free for All album.  On this song, as well as all the rest, there are distorted guitars, thumping bass, pounding drums and vocals that can be best described as sneering perfection. 

There is even a love song in “Who’s She Killing” and the expected ode to debauchery in “We Ain’t Gonna Not Get Drunk Tonight.”  The title track will have heads banging and the slow slide guitar section of “Sun Won’t Shine” is, for, lack of a better three words, totally bad ass

The cover art is totally cool as well.  Remember those early Molly Hatchet albums…the first two with the cool Viking dudes on them? Well, they were actually works of art by the famous painter Frank Frazetta.  American Dog commissioned the cover for Neanderthal from Frank’s daughters.  The cover is a Frazetta painting of four cave men running naked through the fields with clubs in their hands…hmm, sounds a lot like an American Dog concert! 

Okay, let’s get down to why we are here and that is to highly recommend that you rock and roll maniacs out there buy this CD.  Dog fans can order the regular CD, which comes with a 12-page full color booklet, an American Dog sticker and an exclusive 5x7 color print of the Frazetta artwork, or, if that is not enough, and you really want to hump that fire hydrant, then go all out and get the DELUXE PACKAGE which includes all of that other shit and an autographed 11x17 poster of the cover-art and an American Dog T-shirt. 

At the end of the day, Neanderthal is a testament to Hannon and the boys will to rock.  They care passionately about their music and they put their heart and soul into every album…every song…every note.  They are fun.  They are truly kick-ass mother fuckers, and, considering the amount of beer they drink, it’s even more impressive that they can do what they do at all!

The bottom line here is that Neanderthal is REAL rock and roll made by real rock and roll maniacs. 

If you like your rock hard, then it just does not get any better than American Dog!

Track Listing:
Who's She Killing
Dirty Fun
Sun Won't Shine
Stuck In The Mud
We Ain't Gonna Not Get Drunk Tonight
Dog Eat Dog
Start To Bleed
Devil Inside

By Jeb Wright