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While I’ve never been what you would call a fanatic of Blue Oyster Cult, I would call myself a fan of at least casual degree. I’ve been listening to these guys since I was in junior high and I’ve given their classic album “Agents of Fortune,” enough spins to wear out two LP’s. I’ve enjoyed that disc enough to spend my dough on the compact disc too. I’ve not been a collector of their entire library like my metalhead buddy of over thirty years Jeff, who is as big a fan of Blue Oyster Cult as you can get.

I believe Jeff has seen B.O.C. over 50 times and at his urging I have given this new release a chance. I’m glad that I’ve spent a few hours with this album and found quite a few songs I really like. The opening track “That Was Me,” has a good riff and is pure B.O.C. joy. “Box In My Head,” while the weakest track for me has a rhythmic head bopping feel to it and is infused with some of the B.O.C. weirdness that I’d venture longtime fans like Jeff will love. “Nightmare Epiphany,” is very reminiscent of late 70’s B.O.C. and wears the tradition proudly.

This album has 14 tracks and while the first four tunes are solid and enjoyable it’s with song five that the album takes off. “Edge of the World,” is a great tune that has me TURNING UP THE VOLUME for the rest of the disc!

Rather than doing a track by track review let me say that songs 5 thru 9 have great riffs, top notch rock and roll vocals, lyrics that range from fun to thought provoking, some serious originality on one tune in particular, and a new B.O.C. classic or two, or three.

The last five songs are progressive, heavy, well-played, and just some very good rock and roll tunes. You’ll find yourself singing along more than once. This is the strongest Blue Oyster Cult I’ve heard in a very long time and a reminder that they are a big part of the hard rock canon.

GO, GO, B.O.C.!

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