2017COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: LINEUP:
Pekka Ansio Heino - lead vocals * Emppu Vuorinen - guitars * Tomppa Nikulainen - keyboards * Jason Flinck - bass, backing vocals * Kalle 'Calu' Torniainen - drumsTRACK LISTING:
01 Sunbound * 02 Help Is On The Way * 03 Indelible Heroes * 04 Taste Of A Champion * 05 Last Forever * 06 Give Me Tonight * 07 Shock * 08 Strangled * 09 Heart Of The Matter * 10 Restless Heart * 11 Big City Dream * 12 PhantasmagoriaRATING: WEBLINKS: www.brotherfiretribe.com
Nice to see our Finnish friends come together for another new album. 2014 was their most recent appearance with 'Diamond In The Firepit', and although it was a reasonable album, it was considered to be the weakest of their discography up to that point. Glad to report that the 2017 offering 'Sunbound' is back to a level which we'd become accustomed to back in 2006-2008, though I have to question the use of the cover art this time around. Put pure and simply, it is godawful. Surely a 10 year old school pupil could've designed something better using Photoshop?
A few weeks back I took a listen to BFT's first track 'Indelible Heroes'. Initially I wasn't that enarmored, but listening to it as part of the 'Sunbound' collection of tracks, it does sound quite reasonable. I was probably in another zone at the time, writing up my West Coast Essential Series article, so my ears were somewhere else. The guys still keep to delivering big and boomy melodic rock anthems, but the man who holds court throughout is keyboardist Tomppa Nikulainen, whose colourful ivory work holds my attention all the way through. Splashes of synth occupy tracks like 'Last Forever', 'Strangled' and the immense 'Big City Dream'. BFT alternate between racier tracks such as 'Help Is On It's Way', and the galloping excellence of 'Restless Heart', but then turn their hand to slower tracks like 'Shock' and 'Phantasmagoria' with good results. I also enjoyed the very American sounding 'Heart Of The Matter' which to me, sounds like perfect AOR fodder.
I have yet to give this album a proper listen, but the signs are good that BFT are back on our radars. I'd be interested to see what the melodic rock community thinks, because from where I'm sitting, 'Sunbound' gets a definite recommendation from yours truly.
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