I was eagerly anticipating hearing the new (and fourth overall) album by Swedish Hardrockers RISE AND SHINE ever since I first found out about it and I recently got sent a promo copy in the post, on first listen I was not disappointed in the slightest, this 10 track affair follows the classic Rise and Shine formula and kicks off with some awesome dual guitar riff action courtesy of Jocke and Daniel which has a strong Sabbath-The Obsessed vibe to it and frontwoman Josabeth Leidi's bluesy gritty passionate vocals are on fine form and are as commanding and soaring and powerful as ever.
2nd track in "Empty Words" has an overall slower, brooding, darker vibe and tempo than the opening track, third song "In The Arms Of Death" is a more uptempo hardrockin' beast kicking in with a riff that MEANS business, this song also has some use of cowbell in it by the drummer Magnus which I personally love to hear and feel works so well with this kind of music, more bands should use cowbell always gets a plus point in my book!. Fourth song "I Don't Belong" keeps up the pace, full of swaggering riffs and there is a good dose of great twin lead guitar work in this song. Track 5 "Someone Elses Share" definetly takes things up a level in terms of heaviness with some crunching metallic riffage which has an 80's heavy metal feel to it actually, bringing to mind classic 80's Ozzy guitar riffing and is definetly the most hardest and aggressive sounding song on the album complete with soaring lead guitar solos bringing the album to a midway crescendo.
The 2nd half of the album kicks off with track 6, "King Cliff" (a tribute to you know who!!) charges out of the speakers in all its Trouble worshipping glory, not quite as fierce sounding as the previous track but I am loving the awesome rockin' Trouble-esque riffing and tempo, nice acoustic outro to this song too. Track 7 "Harmony and Noise" is quite a quirky little number and abit psyched out sounding, track 8 "Dirty Tricks" is an acoustic song which seems to have been born out of a bad personal experience. "Another Troubled Mind" picks up the pace once again leading the charge into the final two songs of the album the last of which "Too Much, Too Fast, Too Loud" brings the album to it's close in fine style and is classic Rise and Shine through and through, there is plenty of variation in tempos throughout this album, something this band have always had a great knack for doing.
This album will NOT disappoint any fan of honest genuine passion filled 70s's and 80's influenced HARDROCKIN' METAL in general and is a release which oozes groove, blues, and doom in equal measure. Watch out for a band of the week blog feature on them on the Terrorizer Magazine website VERY soon.
5 UGHS OUT OF 5!!