Picks and Pans Review: Kingdom Come

updated 04/25/1988 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 04/25/1988 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Kingdom Come

Say what you will about Lenny Wolf, the German-born singer who leads this band, but the guy is obviously a Plant lover—as in Robert Plant, singer for the once and future kings of hard rock, Led Zeppelin. This debut album by an international quintet has drawn attention because of its sonic reconstruction of Zeppelin. Most of that comparison is predicated on Wolf's vocal resemblance to Plant. In fact his timbre is often remarkably similar. He also shares Plant's ability to shift his tone suddenly from teasingly sultry to pyrotechnic. But in the slower sections, it's apparent that Wolf's pitch is lower and not as electrifyingly subdermal—he's unlikely, anyway, to get under anyone's skin. Outside the vocals, the Kingdom Come-Led Zep comparison crumbles. Kingdom Come's Danny Stag can't generate the stunning guitar fireworks Jimmy Page did. Just as important, James Kottak is nowhere near the hammerhead drummer that John Bonham was. Wolf, who does most of the composing, can't write as well either, although What Love Can Be and Get It On are interesting attempts at cloning Zep's formula. Face it: Kingdom Come isn't the second coming of Led Zeppelin. But hard rock fans can dream, can't they? (Polydor/Polygram)

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