LOUDNESS – Eve To Dawn


There are certain songs that will forever stay in my memory as they have been instrumental in helping shape my personality and musical tastes as a young teenager. One such song was “Heavy Chains” – a four minute and eighteen second mid tempo Heavy Metal ‘monster’ created by the cult 80s Japanese Metal quartet Loudness and featured in their 1985 release “Thunder In The East” – a song that was included in the programme of every decent Metal DJ back in the day.

Times have, of course, changed, and the music industry with them but somehow Loudness managed to keep themselves busy and are now ready to release their (believe it or not!) twenty-fifth studio album entitled “Eve To Dawn”.

Last time I checked on Loudness they were still a Hard Rock band with a Metal sound, a band that liked to keep their ideas simple but add the heaviness. What the eleven compositions featured in “Eve To Dawn” clearly suggest is that the balance between Metal and Hard Rock elements have somewhat changed, favouring the former, resulting in Loudness sounding more aggressive and urgent than they have ever been before!

Furthermore, while Akira Takasaki’s guitar work is as prominent as ever, a lot more room has been provided to bassist Masayoshi Yamashita to indulge in his funky grooves, adding much needed flair and energy to the music.

Following the short atmospheric oriental-sounding intro “A Light In The Dark”, I was completely blown away by the raw energy of “The Power Of Truth”, a mid-tempo head banger whose riffs are so powerful that they could potentially tear down the walls of your room if played loud enough. “Come Alive Again” is a simple & catchy hard-rocker, while  the Dio-sounding “Survivor” could have easily been the stand-out track of the album had it not suffered from an unjust production which, at times, makes it sound somewhat bogged down.

Both “Keep You Burning” and “Gonna Do It My Way” are based on catchy sing-along tunes that make them potential crowd pleasers, while “Hang Tough” is a ballsy anthem that brilliantly combines fast and melodic elements with futuristic supporting key tunes. In the instrumental “Emotions” Akira Takasaki is allowed to flex his guitar muscles to the extreme while the gothy “Comes The Dawn” and the duet “Pandora”/”Crazy!Crazy!Crazy!” find bassist Masayoshi Yamashita in fine form, offering up his funk-infused bass frequencies with unnerving ease!

When I started listening to “Eve To Dawn” I did so in the hope that it would turn out to be a decent Metal album worthy of the band’s name and cult status. What I discovered instead was what is possibly one of the best albums ever released by these noisy Metal samurai – and possibly the Hard Rock/Metal highlight of the year! I am very happy I received the finished product for review as I simply could not imagine an album of such vision, quality and passion missing from my record/CD collection! Bow your heads in respect and purchase your copy without fear!

 John Stefanis

 Rating: ****1/2 (4.5/5.0)

David Randall plays a selection of new and classic rock in his weekly show first broadcast 14 June 2020 including reference to the Feature series “2020 Vision”.

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Featured Albums w/c 6 July (Mon-Fri)

09:00-12:00 MANDOKI SOULMATES Living In The Gap (Red Rock Production/Cleopatra)
12:00-13:00 MAGNUS KARLSSON’S FREE FALL – We Are The Night (Frontiers)
14:00-16:00 BEN REEL The Nashville Calling (B.Reel Records)

Power Plays w/c 6 July (Mon-Fri)

ZENITH MOON Gypsy (Golden Robot Records)
RARITY Leave It Alone (New Damage Records)
THE RISING I Want You (indie)
MANDOKI SOULMATES Young Rebels (Red Rock Production/Cleopatra)
LA GUNS Well Oiled Machine (Golden Robot Records)

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