|Eden Open Minds||Majestic Rock Records|
Eden is a UK melodic rock band that features Nick Workman, vocalist for one of my favourite bands Kick, and guitarist Vince O'Regan (Bob Catley, Pulse, Alibi).|
I'm a big fan of Nick and I'm pleased to hear anything he releases, be it with Kick or solo.
Eden is an interesting album – it mixes traditional British melodic rock with a more adventurous edge, which sometimes sees the guys head off into a more experimental range. If I'm honest with myself, it isn't the easiest album to listen to – it doesn't adhere to any typical melodic rock boundaries, instead challenging listeners to pay attention with additional instrumentation and some unexpected musical passages and pace changes.
Workman's lead vocals are what sells this record for me. It's not an easy album to describe, but I don't think it would be unfair to suggest that it is part Kick, part Pulse, part Led Zeppelin inspired classic rock and part something a little different again.
The album differs from Kick in that it is not as modern in feel – definitely more classic rock, yet with an aggressive edge at times that gives it a heavier vibe.
Helming the sound is the Tommy Denander of British rock – Vince O'Regan. I've not always been enthusiastic for his production skills, but his guitar playing is of the highest caliber.
True to form, I'm not sold on Vince's production of this album – the whole guitar/keyboard/drum sound is much as it always is – a little on the tinny side – and not beefy enough. Those familiar with Pulse and the last Catley album will know it well. Sadly my enjoyment of those two albums were affected by poor production.
However, this alum is a lot more comfortable to listen to, so credit where it is due.
As far as the song highlights - Close Your Eyes isn't the big melodic rocker you might expect to open any album, but it gets better each listen.
The moody Fools Parade is a more instant track and the closest thing here to Kick. A great chorus melody and lead vocal add to the intense feel.
Chase The Sun features a strong lead vocal and an interesting and somewhat adventurous passage midway through the song, plus some fine guitar work.
Heads Up is a great all out rocker as is the even faster paced All Fall Down, which is another track that has a sparse sound that becomes better with each listen.
On a softer note, How Far You Are is a terrific ballad, filled with and emotional vocal and great melodic hook. The album closes with the varied and intense rocker Erase And Rewind.
A beefier sound might have helped deliver the message the band envisioned, but at the end of the day, it is a piece of work the guys can be proud of. It will be down to the individual tastes of Kick fans as to how this rates with them.
include("f-review.p3"); retrieve("eden-om",0,1); ?>