Sunday, January 1, 2012

Chris ANTBLAD: "Century"

Rating: 8 /10

Label: Melodicrock Records 2011

Review by Kimmo Toivonen

Former Spin Gallery vocalist Chris Antblad finally got his first solo album out a while ago, and this is a safe bet for anyone into down-to-earth melodic rock. Antblad is a fine vocalist in the vein of Danny Wilde or Bryan Adams, and his songwriting is carved from the same wood as theirs. The production is quite excellent, although those who like their melodic rock a bit raunchy and raw might find it too polished and polite.

The album's opener "A Fire Burning" doesn't give the best first impression, as it's hardly the "hottest" track of the album, despite the title. It's a nice enough pop-rock track, but for me one of the weaker songs. The title track has a slight "new country" vibe, but I prefer it to the first song.

Both "Asleep In Your Arms" and "Battlefields" are somewhat darker and more dramatic songs and quite excellent, as is the very Danny Wilde-like "Get In Your Car" with its' catchy chorus. The highly melodic "When Fools Rush In" is one of my favourites, but I'm not too keen on the overtly "modern" production of "I Stand Corrected". The squeaking synths are frankly downright annoying!

Between two country'ish songs is the straightforward rocker "I'm Gonna Make You Mine" which I rate as one of my faves. "Jealous Eyes" stands out as a bit different because of its' Toto-like vibe. The last two songs are both very good, especially "Living On A Lie" which closes the album very nicely.

I can't say I dislike any of these songs, but then again, as good as they are, I'm not sure whether any of these songs will make it to my "favourite songs of 2011" list. Therefore, only an "8", albeit a strong one.

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