Swiss rock band Gotthard slowly and over the span of years moved away from hard rock and redirected their sound towards mainstream rock that allowed the band the enlarge their fanbase. Since the heart of rock’n’roll is still what drives Gotthard founding member Leo Leoni, the guitarist started a side-project called CoreLeoni. That was in 2018, the year when their first record hit the shelves. Leoni took Gotthard songs and equipped them with the spirit of rock.

The album was well-received by fans and caused a positive echo that inspired Leoni to continue with CoreLeoni, next to his work with Gotthard. In the meantime we are four years further down the road and CoreLeoni launch their new album ‘III’. As anyone can assume, it’s the third record from the Swiss-based guitarist who has onboarded with Eugent Bushpepa a new singer. The powerful voice of the latter is certainly an enrichment for CoreLeoni and listening to the pumping rocker ‘Like It or Not’ gives an idea of his vocal range.  

‘III’ inhales the spirit of hard rock which becomes apparent while listening to the galloping ‘Wake Up Call’, the classic rock inspired ‘Purple Dynamite’ and the grooving ‘Would You Love Me’. No doubt, an album like ‘III’ needs a ballad and after cruising through the rocking tracklisting ‘Deep in My Soul’ finally brings the soulful sound to forefront.

One of the most influential bands when it’s about rock music are The Rolling Stones and ‘Jumpin’ Jack Flash’ is a classic. Covering such a song always carries the risk of not living up to the original. Now, Leo Leoni and bandmates succeed when CoreLeoni-ze the timeless rock anthem. The guys add some heaviness to their version and make it to a roaring hard rock hymn that stays close to the original and still has a lot of own identity. Well done, that is what one can conclude.

‘III’ is a vintage-oriented hard rock record that features music which isn’t offered too often these days. An organic sound, great melodies, good hooks and Leoni’s screaming guitar are what makes this longplayer to a groovy ambassador of rock’n’roll. Denim and leather music.

Rating: 8 out of 10.


  1. Let Life Begin Tonight
  2. Purple Dynamite
  3. Guilty Under Pressure
  4. Greetings From Russia
  5. Sometimes
  6. Like It Or Not
  7. Wake Up Call
  8. Sick & Tired
  9. Would You Love Me
  10. Deep In My Soul
  11. Jumpin’ Jack Flash (The Rolling Stones cover)

Label: Atomic Fire Records

Genre: Hard Rock

Release Date EU: May 20th, 2022




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