Top critical review
WhoCares Rocks for Armenia
on 9 September 2011
From the opening notes on Out of My Mind, you get a sensation that this could be something special - and Iommi, Gillan, Lord, McBrain, Newsted and Lindestrom deliver a solid hard rock anthem - of Gillan no doubt relating his own personal experience of seeing the aftermath of an earthquake in Armenia - which of course, led to the Rock Aid Armenia charity event.
The song sadly does overstay it's welcome, as the refrain of "Out of My Mind" becomes repetetive, but the band is tight - and watching the film clip (it appears that the video footage is cd-rom only - I could play the disc on a computer, but not on the xbox/dvd player), it was a delight to see some masters of rock/metal at work (in particular Jon Lord, who shows, that even though he's retired from the hard rock scene he set alight in the 70's with Deep Purple, that he's lost nothing in how to deliver his magic on the Hammond organ).
Holy Water, conversely, is nothing short of a masterpiece - and one which makes your heart glow and cheeks ruddy as the favourite tipple does on a winter's day. Gillan again is sublime vocally here, and this song is just classic Ian Gillan rock. The Armenian musicians on dudek and keyboards are sometimes swamped by Iommi's all pervading guitar, but they add another dimension to the song - and it is for their benefit, as well as other very talented musicians that this single was recorded.
The documentary is short and to the point - showing the past history of what came before, and what is now, and Ian is witty and humble - a rare breed of rock star it seems these days, and it seems he genuinely is concerned about the Armenian people. Tony Iommi too, visits, but isn't interviewed as much, which is a shame, (as a Sabbath fan, I'd have been interested in hearing more about his involvement in the project). The Armenian musicians have got talent that needs to be refined, and I do hope they get the school up and running.
If WhoCares themselves did a full album, I'd certainly have a listen - it certainly boosts hopes that Gillan and Iommi may work together again on a song or two in the future - but in any case, this is certainly a worthwhile cause. If only there was one more song...