Diemonds – Never Wanna Die (Napalm)

Genre: Hard Rock/Heavy Metal

According to her over-excited European label bosses, delectable Diemonds singer Priya Panda ‘breaks every cultural, social, gender and sexual boundary known to hard rock’. It’s some boast.

In truth it’s simply too early to tell where Panda stands in the pantheon of rock and roll boundary breakers – and, let’s face it, there’ve been a few – but three albums in and the feisty frontwoman is certainly holding her own with peers Kobra Paige, Lzzy Hale and Jill Janus.

There’s a catchy, keenly commercial feel to Never Wanna Die and it sounds like the record Diemonds designed to fire them into the big leagues. Lyrically it’s aimed at disaffected teenage kids but sonically it will appeal to their Sabbath/Purple-worshipping parents.

The blunt fury of Hell Is Full is juxtaposed neatly with the confessional Ain’t That Kinda Girl (although we’re sure Panda is) and if Better Off Dead is needlessly bleak then set closer Save Your Life ensures hope is the prevailing emotion.

This is impressive stuff from Toronto’s hard rock heroes but Panda still has some way to go to meet her label’s lofty expectations. Simon Rushworth

RUSHONROCK RATED: 8/10 Rough Diemonds