’70s classic rock legends Cactus have released their new album, Tightrope, on all formats today. (April 5th) The band filmed a slick performance video for the title track, which offers one of the album’s most killer and memorably groovy hooks (see it below).

Founding member and drum legend Carmine Appice had this to say about the song: “Tightrope is one of my favorite songs from the album. The drum and bass groove plus the cool guitar riff rock. Cool melodies on top make this is a great classic heavy blues rock track. I love it!!!”

Cactus came to be known as “the American Led Zeppelin,” a moniker they owned by virtue of their explosive blues rock stylings, subdued yet undeniably brilliant musicianship, not to mention their energetic and vivacious stage presence which made them a staple of arena rock venues around the globe. Now the band has returned with a smashing new album called Tightrope that strikes a delicate balance between powerful, driving rockers and more complex, heady album tracks. Still led by Appice alongside longtime members Jimmy Kunes on vocals and Randy Pratt on harmonica, Tightrope is, according to Appice, “one of the best Cactus albums we’ve ever done. From playing to production and songs, we really took a step up.” They are joined by new lead guitarist/vocalist Paul Warren (ex-Rod Stewart, Tina Turner, Joe Cocker) and James Caputo on bass. Tightrope will also give longtime Cactus fans a reason to cheer as it includes special guest appearances from original Cactus guitarist Jim McCarty and singer Phil Naro.

Tightrope track listing:

01. Tightrope 
02. Papa Was A Rolling Stone 
03. All Shook Up 
04. Poison In Paradise 
05. Third Time Gone
06. Shake That Thing
07. Primitive Touch
08. Preaching Woman Man Blues
09. Elevation
10. Suite 1 & 2: Everlong, All The Madmen
11. Headed For A Fall
12. Wear It Out

Dana’s note: If you are having trouble viewing, hit refresh

Cactus has had a long and turbulent history. Formed in 1970 from the ashes of Vanilla Fudge by Carmine Appice and Tim Bogert, the initial lineup also featured McCarty and vocalist Rusty Day. (Appice and Bogert had originally planned a new band with Jeff Beckwhich was put off until 1973, because of Beck’s near-fatal car crash in 1969.) Jim McCartyhad come from Mitch Ryder & The Detroit Wheels and was playing with The Buddy Miles Express. Tim and Carmine also found vocalist Day in The Amboy Dukes with Ted Nugent. Together, the four musicians formed Cactus, named after the peyote cactus, which provided a key ingredient in mind-altering drugs.

While Cactus saw success from the start and soon built a loyal fan base, by early 1973, the band had collapsed mainly due to lack of real support from its label, and the fact that Beck was now ready play with Carmine and Tim. It would not be until 2006, three decades after the tragic death of Rusty Day, that the group reformed with Pratt and Kunes. When Tim Bogert was forced into retirement after a serious motorcycle accident, Pete Bremy jumped in both in Cactus and Vanilla Fudge. 

2 Responses

  1. Another overly long press piece I stopped reading …the video I thought was pretty stupid…but I kind of liked the song , I listened twice 2nd time without video , and I have to say pretty good tune – is this really cactus though ? Is this the original vocalist with carmine ?

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