The Big Deal is a melodic rock band from Serbia, releasing their debut album ‘First Bite’ in 2022.
Fronted by the stunning voices of singers Nevena Brankovic and Ana Nikolic, The Big Deal‘s debut album is a heavy-hitting slab of melodic hard rock. Eleven songs across forty feisty minutes are guaranteed to keep you hooked from start to finish. The band is completed with Alogia band mates Srdjan Brankovic (guitars) and Marko Milojevic (drums), along with Revolution Saints bass player Alessandro Del Vecchio.
As a precursor to the band’s debut album of original material, The Big Deal released three covers – ‘Rock The Night’ by Europe, ‘Amaranth’ by Nightwish, and ‘Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)’ by ABBA – heavily whetting the appetites of rock fans all around the world.
Now before I start my review, a memory of a time long long long ago comes to mind – a time that anyone older than fifty years of age will know very well. At the start of the eighties, when hard rock and heavy metal were just breaking big, way before the internet, digital downloads, YouTube, and Spotify – when word of mouth or browsing the local record stores, was how you would find new music. And a lot o’ the time, it was album covers that attracted me to new rock and metal. Obvious bands such as Angel Witch, Black Sabbath, Motorhead, Saxon, and the mascot led Iron Maiden had already grabbed my attention, but as an impressionable red-blooded teenage male, with puberty and growing sexual awareness making a lot of my decisions, it was the album covers of Girlschool, Lee Aaron, Lita Ford, and Warlock, that would tease, tingle and excite me into parting with my pocket money! And what great decisions they were – ’cause not only was a young boy’s dreams filled with sexy images and arousing thoughts of Kim McAuliffe, Lee Aaron, Lita Ford, and Doro Pesch, but the music was fucking awesome too!
So with that memory brought back to the fore by the stunning pair of legs grabbing my attention on the cover of The Big Deal‘s new album ‘First Bite’, then surely the music is gotta be awesome too, right! Damn fucking right it is – heavy-hitting, infectious, and an absolute pleasure to the ears, eyes, and heart! With a bombastic sound much rockier than bands such as Battle Beast, Amberian Dawn, and Metalite combined, the new album from the Serbian five-piece is a hard-rocking, pop rock party anthem feast to satisfy the enormous hunger of rockers and metallers everywhere. I say enormous hunger, for this album, has been hotly anticipated for ages, with appetites whetted by the emergence of a number of singles leading up to the release of the album – each one better than the last!
So ‘First Bite’ the album – is a sensational and arousing aural avalanche of infectious melodic hard rock! Eleven of the most stimulating and highly energetic songs fill the debut long-player from the Serbians – with the first single released ‘Never Say Never’, getting the album off to a blistering start! Quickly into its stride, ‘Never Say Never’ hits like a tornado – and I don’t mean the storm wind! I mean the twin-engine multi-role combat aircraft that delivers its payload with devastating accuracy. ‘Never Say Never’ hits the sweet spot with perfect precision, its hard-rocking nature full of energy and oomph. The bombastic fury of ‘First Bite’s opening salvo is simply stunning, and will send listeners into an ecstatic state of euphoria! Which is where they’re gonna stay for the rest of the album – for the band to power on with ‘I Need You Here Tonight’. And if either of the two lead singers were to ask me that – you just try stopping me! I would crawl over broken glass, swim through boiling lava, and run through a minefield just “to be with them tonight”. ‘I Need You Here Tonight’ is much more punchy than the opening song, the sing-along ability phenomenal, with the party rock atmosphere higher and more intense than you’ll find anywhere else.
Phew, what an incredible start! As the Pointer Sisters claimed way back in 1982 “I’m so excited, and I just can’t hide it”, and with nine more songs still to go “I’m about to lose control” – but I’m a professional, I can do this. But it’s gonna be close, for The Big Deal ramp up the excitement levels with the, err, ahem, sensational ‘Sensational’! Moving in a more melodic hard rock direction, but keeping the punchy nature of the previous song, ‘Sensational’ is a thrilling ride with an infectious corker of a chorus sing along. The first three songs have all been highly addictive head-turners, creating a can’t stop listening attitude among every listener everywhere! Reaching new heights of euphoria, ‘Top Heaven’ is an arousing romp of high-energy hard rock. The pace, power, and pomp of ‘Top Heaven’ is top-notch, top drawer, and definitely top level. The Big Deal has begun with such electrifying energy, have they got the stamina to last ’til the climax of the album! You bet your bottom dollar they have – the album moving stealthily on with the pounding ‘Wake The Fire’. A head nodding foot-stomper, ‘Wake The Fire’ is a sensual stroll of mid-tempo hard rock that’ll plant smiles a mile wide on the faces of listeners. And I think it’s about time to mention the powerhouse vocals of the two lead singers – sultry, seductive, and sexy. And their voices are fucking fantastic too.
Moving up a few divisions, ‘In The Dead Of The Night’ punches more heavily than earlier, the heavy-hitting hard rock party anthem atmosphere is still very much in full swing. ‘First Bite’ is a wing-dinger of a party that just won’t end – no matter how tired you are, you’re still gonna rock out to The Big Deal‘s debut album. It’s that enticing, that attractive, and has so much more pull than gravity! And oh my God, what a gloriously old school feel ‘Rebel Lady’ oozes – it’s like the eighties AOR aura has come forward forty years and mated with the oomph of the band’s bombastic root sound. And even with this slight variation on the album’s overall sound, the energy, and infectious levels remain extremely high. And whoa there – what an explosive change of pace! ‘Power On’ roaring on at a speed that is gonna grab the attention of metalheads – and even create mosh pits! Yes, readers – mosh pits! ‘Power On’ is the most metal song ‘First Bite’ has to offer, featuring a classic “metal scream” ala Dickinson and Halford. And ‘Power On’ also features the gloriously heartwarming “foot on the monitor” feel of traditional heavy metal – such a gorgeous sound, the band has made me go even weaker at the knees!
And as the album moves into its final third, there is absolutely no warning in the incredibly high energy level – ‘Bad Times, Good Times’ returning the AOR influence of earlier, adding even more levels of an infectious and addictive nature. The Big Deal has been firing on all cylinders since the album began – fuelled by a never-ending energy supply! Punchy hard rock makes an emphatic return in the mighty shape of ‘Fallen’ – with yet another fantastic sing-along style chorus. The level of crowd participation in a live arena is gonna be phenomenal, with every song an opportunity to join in and have a great fucking time. The party atmosphere the band create is incredible – and with the final song just around the corner, a modern-day rock album is gonna come to an end without featuring a single ballad! Pounding hard rock greets the ears as ‘Lady Of The Night’ heralds the impending conclusion of a great debut album. An album of gorgeous sights and sounds, of euphoria and excitement, and of eleven highly exhilarating songs.
Overall, a superb album of hard-rocking, pop-rock party anthems that are simply stunning. ‘First Bite’ is sensational and highly recommended.
Never Say Never
I Need You Here Tonight
Wake The Fire
In The Dead Of The Night
Bad Times, Good Times
Lady Of The Night
The Big Deal: Facebook
Release Year: 2022
Label: Frontiers Music s.r.l.
Reviewed by Iron Mathew for Frenzy Fire, and Metal-Roos.