Release Date 12.10.18
It is a sign of the march of time that former new kids on the of Scandinavian melodic rock block are now being succeeded by a third wave of impossibly young bands, and alongside the likes of One Desire and Art Nation , Creye are one of the standard bearers of this movement. Last year’s ‘Straight to the Top’ EP left their debut eagerly anticipated.
The introduction to the first track ‘Holding On’, with its stabbing keys and electronic drums conjures up images of an eighties soundtrack and it has a gloriously melodic chorus to match, and talking of which the intro to ‘Nothing to Lose’ reminded me of ‘Burning Heart’ although the hook was not quite as strong.
They lie on the lighter end of the spectrum and as well as the obvious eighties influences, comparisons with early HEAT and Houston spring to mind with the focus on bouncy melodies and choruses rather than riffs.
Indeed ‘Different State of Mind’ and ‘All We Need is Faith’ veer rather too far into pop territory while ‘Never Too Late’, featuring a classic chorus line in ‘keep fighting for this broken dream’ has a bit of a West Coast feel, much like fellow countrymen Work of Art.
‘Miracle’ is a good song but the comparison I was reaching for was Savage Garden, not least in the slightly fey vocals of Robin Jidhed, son of one of the great Scandi AOR singers in Alien singer Jim.
However midway through the album comes an absolute stunner in ‘Christina’ with Robin’s vocals soaring and a thrilling moment as the power chord leads into a hook filled chorus which justified borrowing the increasingly prolific songwriting team of Michael Palace and Soren Kronqvist for this one.
‘Straight to the Top’ is gloriously anthemic with a very melodic feel while I was hearing comparisons to some of the cult heroes of AOR- Diving for Pearls and Mitch Malloy on ‘Love Will Never Die’ and Signal on the intro to ‘Still Believe in You’.
The 80’s hi-tech feel of ‘City Lights’ would again have graced a TV theme tune in the day as the star rolls up the sleeves on his shoulder-padded jacket, and ‘Desperately Loving’ is a soft rock classic with Robin’s voice conveying real anxiety. While the emphasis is on the songs and vocals, throughout the guitar solos from major songwriter Andreas Gullstrand are tidy.
Since the album was recorded Robin Jidhed has left the band, rendering this release a bit of an oddity, but judging from the quality of these songs and their performance at Rockingham Festival with new singer August Rauer, this is only the start of something big. **** 1/2
Review by Andy Nathan
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