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Hav­ing been Alice Cooper’s right-hand woman for the past four years, Nita Strauss con­quered many of the big­gest are­nas the world over. On her solo de­but, it’s even more ev­i­dent just why she’s be­come the face of gui­tar for a new era – mar­ry­ing neo­clas­si­cal sym­phonies in­spired by her long-dis­tant com­poser rel­a­tive with crush­ing met­al­core beat­downs. Our­most Des­per­ate­hour sits some­where in be­tween Dragon­force and In Flames whereas Lion­a­mong­wolves chan­nels the kind of hell­fire that raged deep within Nor­way’s in­fa­mous black metal scene. Equally as im­pres­sive is Strauss’s abil­ity to take it all down a notch and colour in slower melodies that im­print on the mind with the kind of fi­nesse made fa­mous by fel­low Ibanez en­dorsees Joe Sa­tri­ani and Steve Vai. Hav­ing made his­tory as the Ja­panese brand’s first fe­male sig­na­ture artist, she’s a per­fect am­bas­sador for the good winds of change – but most im­por­tantly of all – she’s sim­ply a phe­nom­e­nal player.

Amit Sharma

Lion Among Wolves

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