House Of LordsALBUM:
Saint Of The Lost SoulsLABEL:
2017COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: LINEUP:
James Christian - vocals, keyboards, acoustic guitars * Jimi Bell - guitar * Chris Tristram - bass * BJ Zampa - drumsGuest Musicians:
Robin Back - backing vocals * Michele Luppi -keyboard & orchestration (#1) * Alessandro Del Vecchio - keyboards (#5) * Tommy Denander - guitars (#10)TRACK LISTING:
01 Harlequin * 02 Oceans Divide * 03 Hit The Wall * 04 Saint Of The Lost Souls * 05 The Sun Will Never Set Again * 06 New Day Breakin' * 07 Reign Of Fire * 08 Concussion * 09 Art Of Letting Go * 10 Grains Of Sand * 11 The Other Option * 12 The Sun Will Never Set Again (Acoustic Version / Bonus)RATING: WEBLINKS: www.jameschristianmusic.com
If there is something to be said about the output from this band, it would be 'consistency'. This is the sort of attribute you want from the best player on your team, who will deliver year after year. And that is what House Of Lords do for Frontiers, and have been now for over a decade. You can go back to some of their past records (all have been reviewed here - refer the tag underneath), and come to the conclusion that most have been at the top of the class for that year, and I'm sure that 'Saint Of The Lost Souls' will do likewise in 2017. In fact, we mentioned the term 'consistency' in the review of their last album 'Indestructible', so it shouldn't come as any surprise to readers. There has been a line-up change. Bass player Chris Tristram (Jack Russell's Great White
and Munroe's Thunder
, the band of former Metal Church
singer Ronnie Munroe) comes in to replace Chris McCarvill.
Before we commence, I can say that this album is much lighter in delivery than recent efforts. It sits closer to the melodic hard rock category than melodic metal, which shouldn't come as a shock if you've been following the band since year dot. 'Harlequin' leads the charge, and features some intricate keyboard orchestration from Michele Luppi
, and makes for a bombastic entrance. This is also the first official video from the album. The pairing of 'Oceans Divide' and 'Hit The Wall' are very melodic, emphasizing what I was saying earlier. These two are rather excellent. The title track 'Saint Of The Lost Souls' goes up a notch on the tempo, Jimi's solo is very speedy on this one. The ballad 'The Sun Will Never Set Again' breaks things up a bit, and even with 'New Day Breakin', things are kept in check. In fact, through the middle section of this album, HoL are markedly restrained, surprisingly so. 'Reign Of Fire', 'Concussion', 'Art Of Letting Go' and 'Grains Of Sand' never at any stage presses the floor to the accelerator. By the time the band reach 'The Other Option' does it feel unleashed, but by then we're at the end of the album.
Overall, 'Saint Of The Lost Souls' presents as a solid outing, comparable to their recent offerings though as mentioned, it is significantly lighter, which is no bad thing really if you're more into the AOR thing rather than the metal thing. For me personally, I much prefer HoL when they heavy it up, but you won't find that here. Many of us have enjoyed this band going right back to their origins, and the fact that they are still going strong says something about longevity in this industry.
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