Platinum Overdose: ‘Murder In High Heels’

Released on August 30, 2019 (Demon Doll Records)

When Demon Doll Records principal Lance V. approached me about having Sleaze Roxx premiere his new band Platinum Overdose‘s new songs, I was a bit apprehensive. The reason why is there is lots of new music that comes Sleaze Roxx‘s way — a few that are great, some that are good, many that are average, some that are simply awful and unfortunately, many that don’t even fit Sleaze Roxx‘s musical scope. Lance V. assured me that I would like what I heard and he was absolutely right in that regard. Lance V. should have just started with the words “Steve Philbrook.” For those who don’t know, Philbrook was the lead vocalist for the now defunct Brass Kitten that released two albums — E-Z ‘N’ Pretty (1990) and Across America (2001). Philbrook‘s vocal range, at least on E-Z ‘N’ Pretty is nothing short of phenomenal and it is obvious that the man has more than retained his great vocal cords almost 30 years later. With Philbrook on board for Platinum Overdose‘s debut album, there is no need to say that the group had a big leg up on coming up with a very special album.

The next question of course was the songs. One listen to “Red Light Rhythm” and especially “Rise Up” confirmed in my mind that Platinum Overdose were the “real deal.” It helps of course to have a stellar supporting cast with rhythm guitarist Matt Thorr (Rough Cutt, Jailhouse, Stephen Pearcy) and lead guitarist Rick Mead (Syre) but the real champion behind Platinum Overdose is actually Demon Doll Records principal Lance V. who is the architect behind the band, plays bass on the album, and produced and mastered the record. When you have put out as many ’80s / ’90s era albums as Lance V. has on his record label Demon Doll Records, apparently you eventually obtain a very good understanding of what a stellar ’80s metal album should sound like and Lance V. has definitely mastered that area. I can’t say enough how great the songs sound. The opening guitar riff on opening track “Pretty & Punk” sucks you in right away and by the time Philbrook sings a few bars, you are well on your way to one of the better tracks that you’ll hear this year.

As much as I like “Pretty & Punk”, I like even better “Rise Up” which will likely be Platinum Overdose‘s signature song going forward. The song is a true anthem from start to finish highlighted by Philbrook‘s amazing vocal delivery. I like all the songs on Murder In High Heels (the title was influenced by KISS‘ track of the same name off Animalize) but there are a couple of others that stand out over the rest. “Red Light Rhythm” is probably lighter fare than I usually listen to but it’s such a great ’80s sounding track that I can’t help but get sucked in every time that I listen to it. “Bye Bye Baby” could have easily found itself on FireHouse‘s debut album. Everything from the melodies to the singing reminds me of FireHouse and especially singer C.J. Snare. “Broken Boulevard” simply has some great melodies and always stands out every time that I listen to the album. Although I like all the songs off Platinum Overdose, I must confess that overall, the songs are mainly lighter fare than I usually listen to (I’m more into the grittier and sleazier bands like Airbourne, The Lazys, Ratt, etc. than the more polished rock n’ roll sounds from FireHouse and Warrant) but they are so good that I always enjoy every song off Murder In High Heels.

One interesting aspect of Platinum Overdose‘s debut album is that some songs date back from the early ’80s and ’90s, and there are many different songwriters including none other than Mötley Crüe‘s Nikki Sixx. From the writing credits, two songs (“Pretty & Punk” and “Bye Bye Baby”) were written by Lance V.‘s former and unfortunately now deceased Champagne Suicide bandmate (from apparently back in the early ’90s) Chester Olsefsky, two were penned by a man named Aerial Stiles (“Young And Wild” and the stellar “Rise Up”), one from Philbrook (“Need Your Love”), two from Lance V. (“Red Light Rhythm” and “Out On The Run”), two involving some collaborations (“Broken Boulevard” and “Girls On Fire”) and one from Sixx (“Black Widow”).

The funny part about that last one is that I thought before opening the CD booklet and noticing the songwriting credits that “Black Widow” sounded somewhat like Mötley Crüe‘s “On With The Show” and had a real Too Fast For Love feel to it. Now I know why! Another interesting tidbit about the “Black Widow” song is that when I interviewed Lance V. back in July, he never mentioned that Sixx wrote one of the songs off Platinum Overdose‘s debut album even though he mentioned just about every other songwriter on the record. Perhaps Lance V. did not want to overshadow Platinum Overdose‘s debut record with Sixx‘s one song contribution? As it turns out and upon doing a little digging, it appears that “Black Widow” was written for the Crüe‘s Shout At The Devil album and was included in the Red, White And Blue compilation record. Ironically enough, I find that “Black Widow” is probably one of the weakest tracks on Murder In High Heels.

Overall, Platinum Overdose‘s debut album Murder In High Heels is a real winner and lives up very well to its moniker “80s’ Metal Alive & Kickin’.” I would be remiss if I did not mention lead guitarist Rick Mead‘s stellar guitar playing and solos throughout the record, which really provide that ’80s feel. There’s a reason why Murder In High Heels is the fastest selling record in Demon Doll Records‘ history. There’s a reason why Steel Panther‘s Michael Starr gave the record a raving endorsement prior to the album’s release. Quite simply, if you like ’80s metal, you need to check out Platinum Overdose‘s Murder In High Heels. The last time that a new album sounded so true to the ’80s, well, it finished at #1 on the Sleaze Roxx’s Top Ten Albums of the Year (i.e. Tales From The Porn‘s H.M.M.V. in 2017).

Track List:
01. Pretty & Punk
02. Rise Up
03. Need Your Love
04. Red Light Rhythm
05. Young And Wild
06. Bye Bye Baby
07. Black Widow
08. Out On The Run
09. Broken Boulevard
10. Girls On Fire

Band Members:
Steve Philbrook – lead vocals, background vocals
Lance V. – bass, background vocals, bridge vocals (4)
Rick Mead – lead guitar
Matt Thorr – rhythm guitar, keyboards, background vocals

Additional Musicians:
Lance Stevens – lead guitar (4, 9)
Glen W. – drums

Produced and mastered by Lance V.
Mixed by Matt Thorr

Band Websites:
Official Website
Demon Doll Records

Reviewed by Olivier for Sleaze Roxx, October 2019

Platinum Overdose‘s “Rise Up” song:

Platinum Overdose – Rise Up

From the debut album ‘Murder In High Heels’ available August 30, 2019 CD available:…

Platinum Overdose‘s “Red Light Rhythm” song:

Platinum Overdose – Red Light Rhythm

From the debut album ‘Murder In High Heels’ available August 30, 2019 CD available:…

Platinum Overdose‘s “Pretty & Punk” single:

Platinum Overdose – Pretty & Punk

From the debut album ‘Murder In High Heels’ available August 30, 2019 CD available:…

Platinum Overdose‘s “Need Your Love” song:

Platinum Overdose – Need Your Love

From the debut album ‘Murder In High Heels’ available August 30, 2019 CD available:…