We Drink for Free

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By the late '90s, it was obvious that Leadfoot was a totally different band from Corrosion of Conformity. Yes, Leadfoot includes former COC members Karl Agell (lead vocals) and Phil Swisher (bass), but the bands are hardly identical. If Bring It On and Take a Look didn't make it abundantly clear that Leadfoot is far from a COC tribute band, We Drink for Free is an additional reminder. This Southern-fried metal/hard rock disc, which was recorded in 2002, has little in common with COC but plenty in common with ZZ Top, Lynyrd Skynyrd, .38 Special and the Outlaws -- the influence of '70s Southern rock is impossible to miss. There are other bands that are doing more fresh-sounding and interesting things with their Skynyrd or ZZ Top influence -- Hammerlock, Alabama Thunderpussy, and Brand New Sin are three alternative metal bands that have, in the '90s and/or 2000s, pointed Southern-minded headbanger music in exciting new directions. Leadfoot, however, is highly derivative, which isn't to say that We Drink for Free isn't good. Bluesy, greasy numbers like "Chicks Love Metal" and "Valley of the Dolls" aren't the least bit groundbreaking -- and they aren't in a class with Skynyrd or ZZ Top's best work -- but they're enjoyable if you like you like your rock & roll boogie with a distinctly Southern edge. Besides, there is no law stating that every band that comes along has to be groundbreaking; the more derivative artists have their place as long as they're good at what they do (which Leadfoot is). We Drink for Free is unlikely to convert anyone who was unreceptive to Bring It On and Take a Look, but those who appreciated Leadfoot's late-'90s output will find this CD to be decent as well.

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