ARION Life Is Beautiful AFM Records [Release date 19.10.18]
Second album by symphonic metal band Arion (their first for AFM Records) and it is typical fare for this sort of music. That’s not to say it is bad, in fact Arion are more keyboards led than similar bands – sometimes the keys dominate a little too much. The cover is perhaps not the best either.
Vocalist Lassi Vääränen comes into his own on the slower songs such as ‘Through Your Falling Tears’ and the atmospheric ‘Last One Falls’. The duet with Elize Ryd on ‘The Break Of Dawn’ is the song of the album by a country mile, with a galloping beat (bit of an electro beat at one point) and rousing chorus, this is top notch melodic metal.
The digipak version adds three re-recorded songs including a banner waving piece of metal in ‘I Am The Storm’.
Good, solid melodic/symphonic metal with a few highlights, perfect for fans of this genre. ***1/2
Review by Jason Ritchie
JEAN BEAUVOIR Rock Masterpieces Vol. 2 AOR Heaven [Release date 23.11.18]
Vol. 2 follows the release of Vol. 1 back in July this year. Again it covers a wide time span of Jean Beauvoir’s work from his solo album ‘Drums Along The Mohawk’ through to the melodic rockers Crown Of Thorns, whilst Voodoo X are represented with ‘Happy Birthday’.
There are some genuine melodic rock classics on here including ‘The Healer’ (every home should have a copy of the Crown Of Thorns debut album) and ‘Motorcycle Loretta’. Jean Beauvoir knows how to pen a catchy chorus coupled with guitar riffs that rattle around in your head days after listening to them. The Sweet cover ‘No You Don’t’ is also included here, which Crown Of Thorns rocked up big time with the guitar riffs and solo.
Jean Beauvoir is a busy man, with a memoir planned and various film projects in development. Hopefully he can find time to create more music, either under the Crown Of Thorns banner or solo, as this collection demonstrates he has kept a consistently high standard of music throughout the years. ****
Review by Jason Ritchie
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Power Plays w/c 15 October 2018
BIRDSONG AT MORNING Waterfall (Blue Gentian Records)
GUN RUNNERS Save Our Souls (indie)
THE BUZNIKS Nail It To The Floor (3MS Music)
NAZARETH The Secret Is Out (Frontiers)
CITY OF THIEVES Fuel And Alcohol (Frontiers)
Featured Albums w/c 15 October (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 STEVE PERRY Traces (BMG)
12:00-13:00 URIAH HEEP Living The Dream (Frontiers)
14:00-16:00 BIRDSONG AT MORNING Signs And Wonders (Blue Gentian Records)
Albums That Time Forgot (Mon-Fri)
18:00-19:00 STEVE MORSE/SARAH SPENCER Angelfire (2010)
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