Italian hard rockers Midnight Sin definitely appear to have the attitude to make it big in what’s left of today’s music scene, but at the moment they seem to be a little light-on in the song department to be true contenders.

They have the good sense at least to leave on a high, with the best track on One Last Ride being the anthemic closer Born This Way. However over the course of the rest of the album they sometimes lose focus and don’t give their songs the sort of impactful results that are clearly intended.

The band are keen to stress their spiritual link to the glory days of hair metal and AOR of the late eighties, but they are neither sleazy or clean-cut enough to pull off an accurate approximation of either style, often falling between the two stools and seeming to come off at half-cock.

Loaded Gun is a rousing opener, vocalist Albert Fish and guitarist LeStar working well together with solid backing from four stringer Acey Guns and his drumming partner-in-rhythm Dany Rake. The chorus could indeed have been found on an album by the likes of Tobruk in 1985, and the performance carries enough conviction to bring the listener along for the ride. This momentum is lost on rambling blues workouts like the plodding Send Me a Light however. This sort of pub rock just doesn’t have a place on a modern album with pretensions to AOR brilliance, I’m afraid.

Still, even this track is well played, and the band clearly are starting from a place of assured musicianship. LeStar contributes some nice solos throughout and Guns’ basswork is pleasingly upfront, especially on the strident Never Say Never. If they could now pack out an album with more material like this album’s opening and closing tracks it’s highly possible they might just be on to something. Worth keeping an eye on.

Midnight Sin will release One Last Ride through Scarlet Records on October 13th.