Last month some interesting Scandinavian albums saw the light of day.
Three fine melodic hard rock debut albums
Fans of 1980s style AOR can’t go wrong with Palace‘s debut album Master Of The Universe (review 1, 2, 3 & 4). Swedish quality, with excellent keyboards and guitar interplay and adventurous songs, at least within the limits of the genre. Production and vocals could’ve been even better and the refrain of No Exit gets pretty annoying once you realize the repetitive character of it, but hey, this is just a debut. The more you listen to it the more you’ll get convinced that this album could have a lasting significance. Melodicrock.nl rating: 91/100.
Cruzh is another new Swedish band that comes up with a debut that’s very interesting for AOR fans (review 1, 2, 3 & 4). Some critics have pointed out that some of the songs are so sugary sweet that they’re almost in Eurovision territory and that the vocals are mingled with a lot of unnessary effects, which is not entirely ungrounded, although it’s not too troublesome either, especially not for a debut album. Melodicrock.nl rating: 80/100.
And last but not least Finnish King Company‘s melodic hard rock album One For The Road, that’s slightly heavier than the first two albums (reviews: 1, 2, 3 & 4). Production-wise, instrumentally and especially vocally this one is almost perfect, but it could also be considered the least innovative of the three, a typical weak point of the genre already. Melodicrock.nl rating: 80/100.
After the impressive self titled debut Swedish Blues Pills are back with their second album Lady In Gold. Interesting 1960s/1970s style blues rock with strong vocals (reviews: 1, 2 & 3) but not as strong as the debut album that took us by surprise in 2014. Melodicrock.nl rating: 70/100.