After their reunion OZ release a new album with “Roll The Dice“, which also has turned out to be their last. I can say one thing very clearly, time had passed OZ big time. If you were not able to get anywhere with great albums such as “Fire In The Brain“ and “III Warning“ during the golden years of Metal, then “Roll The Dice” almost automatically had to sink.
The CD was not bad at all, but even old fans of the band were not all that enthused by their change in style. Almost nothing had been left over from the rough Heavy Metal of their early days, instead the band cranked up the commercialism and in the Eighties, under a different name, they probably could have some reasonable success, but in the early Nineties? The vocals of Ape De Martini also sound a lot more polished and higher than before. During the heavier parts of the album I can make out some similarities with old PRETTY MAIDS, but mostly it is the old US Hard Rockers that come to mind. The album is the most fun, when the guys step on the pedal a bit more, as on the title track that reminds me a lot of one of my eternal favourites MAY-LINN or “Runaways”, which would not have been out of place on “Mob Rules The World”, the criminally underrated debut of German CENTAUR.
The calmer tracks also have their moments, but the choruses often are rather meh, same for the melodies. Nothing bad, but no song that will really grip you and the singer has some real problems in the higher registers. So all in all not a really bad album, but definitely not more than average.
(Online January 24, 2011)