Album review: LIV KRISTINE – Enter My Religion (bonus tracks)

On Sunday 10 July in “The Eclectic Mix” on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio (18:00 GMT, 19:00 CET) Liv Kristine chats to David Randall about her solo career with tracks from the albums.  In this bonus interview edit, she chats about the reissue(s).  Additional non-broadcast material will be made available via our podcasts.

LIV KRISTINE - Enter My Religion (bonus tracks)

Allegro Talent Media [Release date 19.08.22]

There are several female singers associated with significant bands in the symphonic metal/rock genre who have failed to really capture a wider audience outside of the band format.  The one exception might be Tarja.

We’ve had the likes of Anette Olzon (Nightwish) and Anneke van Giersbergen (The Gathering) producing excellent solo work but failing to achieve deserved wider recognition.

For example Olzon’s first solo offering ‘Shine’ (2014) was a musical departure that probably failed to ignite Nightwish followers but should have captured ears more receptive to melodic pop rock.  Subsequently she has returned to more bombastic symphonic metal usually as a collaborative effort.

I would put one time Leaves’ Eyes front lady Liv Kristine in this category.  Excellent with her band (and the earlier Theatre Of Tragedy) but successive solo albums failing to bring a new, bigger audience.  Surely a reassessment is long overdue?

And ‘Enter My Religion’, now expanded with demo and unreleased tracks, affords that opportunity.  It was her second solo album in 2006.  It’s available for the first time on vinyl with a bonus single plus – a sign of the times – there is a cassette version!  I notice, too, that the currently available CD version of this album retails on Amazon for £55 so buyer beware.

Similar to her solo debut ‘Deus Ex Machina’, ‘Enter My Religion’ is best described as pop rock with every song commercially attractive and accessible.

From the upbeat ‘Over The Moon’, ‘All The Time In The World’ and ‘My Revelation’ to the ballads ‘Fake A Smile’ and ‘Blue Emptiness’ it’s all very easy on the ear and highly melodic.  You would be surprised – and perhaps relieved – that there are no cookie monster (beauty and the beast) vocals she pioneered with her previous bands.

I interviewed Liv in 2012 when Leaves’ Eyes were on a three-way bill with Firewind and Eden’s Curse and – as you do – immediately collected some of the band’s back catalogue. This reissue may prompt the uninitiated to do exactly the same with Liv’s solo works.  You won’t be disappointed.  ****

Review by David Randall

David Randall chatted to Liv Kristine when she was on tour in the UK in September 2012

Josh Taerk’s latest Sunday Session was streamed on Sunday 22 May.

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David Randall presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sundays at 22:00 GMT, repeated on Mondays and Fridays), when he invites listeners to ‘Assume The Position’. This show was first broadcast on 12 June 2022.

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