Album reviews:THE DARKER MY HORIZON – Acquiesce

THE DARKER MY HORIZON - Acquiesce [Released 23.03.15]

A new band maybe, but they feature two former members of Sacred Heart in vocalist/guitarist Paul Stead and guitarist Mark Stephenson. Former Crimes Of Passion bassist Simon Fearn and drummer Gavin Tester round out the line-up.

One thing that is apparent with the Darker My Horizon is that although the main songwriter Paul Stead has kept the melodic side of Sacred Heart, there is a distinctive metallic edge to most to the songs on here. A more modern rock sound of say Shinedown on the get up and go riffery of ‘Can’t Stop The Rain’ and then you have the more straight ahead melodic rock of ‘Summer Time’ (nice uplifting chorus on this one and perfect for airplay). There is even some classic 80′s party rock in the shape of ‘Perfect’, think Warrant meets a cleaner version of Steel Panther!

There are a couple of ballads, pick of them is ‘In The Dark’ – a reflective lyric and the piano adds to the overall feel of the song. ‘Rest In Peace’ is an interesting one, with a synth dance beat underpinning the song and a high end vocal . May surprise some listeners but as I have eclectic musical tastes I did like this a lot! The instrumental part melds synths and a few guitar solos to great effect.

The harder edge of the band shows on ‘Gasoline & Opium’, loving the Zakk Wylde approved riff on this one. ‘The Road’ is a clever song, starting quietly with a bass, percussion and synth before the full band kicks on the chorus. One of the album’s guitar solo highlights on this song.

A big step up both musically and in the songs from Sacred Heart, The Darker My Horizon deserve a listen and if you liked Sacred Heart and modern hard rock then off you go to their website.  A confident and assured debut.  ****

Review by Jason Ritchie

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