Saturday, September 14, 2019

Age of Reflection's "A New Dawn" is Old School 80's Melodic Rock With A Modern Twist

Age of Reflection is another Swedish band with it's roots firmly planted in the 1980's. Lead vocalist Lars Nygren's vocals add a layer of emotion to a very solid and polished sound. Nygren has something unique in his vocal delivery that separates him from other singers. Maybe it's a touch of Paul Stanley in his prime mixed with the late Jani Lane from Warrant. Guitarist Jonas Nordqvist has been influenced by Neal Schon, Josh Ramos and Steve Vai. On "A New Dawn", the band picks up right where they finished on 2017's "In The Heat of The Night".

If you are a fan of big dramatic arrangements, scorching guitar solos and soaring emotive vocals, this is the band for you. "Aurora" is a melodic shredding instrumental intro that leads into the album's centerpiece, "A New Dawn". This one-two punch could be the perfect night driving FM radio staple. "Stay With Me" is a mid-tempo rocker, well written and guitar driven. Lars singing style is very lyrical. His voice seems to body surf over the melody, being whisked along on each little twist and turn.

"Here I Stand" faces down negative consequences and regret and pleads with it's audience. It's backdrop is a melodic current that will sweep you away. "Until Death Do Us Part" is a rocking marriage song, declarative and bold. The band rides these lyrical themes with waves of sonic power. Nygren's voice and the harmonies of his band mates keep your ears in the game. "What if I Break" is a surprising acoustic power ballad contemplating the ups and downs of a confused relationship. The band's vocal prowess is on full display here.

One of the most surprising moments on the album is the band's remake of the Cutting Crew's "I Just Died In Your Arms". The band rocks it up a bit but it's actually very faithful to the original. Other highlights on this record include "Go" and "Write It On The Wall".

What I like about this band is that they write songs that have staying power. There are a few sonic curve balls. And the musicianship is top notch. The difficulty for this band is the struggle to get airplay and to be noticed. Radio is not user friendly right now and bands like Age of Reflection can get lost in the shuffle. But overall another stellar offering by this band from Stockholm. Look for the album to drop September 27th via AOR Heaven Records.

5 comments:

  1. Obviously not familiar with this band prior to reading this glowing
    review, but sounds very promising. One question: Is it just me, or is
    every other Swedish melodic rock singer named "LARS"? Whatever happened
    to front men with names like Olaf and/or Sven?!? Definitely need to check out that Cutting Crew cover. Vastly underrated band. Thanks again for another seemingly stellar pick!!

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    1. Thanks for reading these. This band is not for everyone but I they are an interesting bunch and certainly have their own sound, especially with the vocals and guitar.

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  2. Your right, very interesting group/sound. Wasn't able to find their
    Cutting Crew cover, but I'm sure that it will eventually find a safe
    home on Youtube...

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  3. The album is not out yet. I have an advanced copy. Lucky me.

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  4. Guess sometimes it pays to be the TRMO with regards to receiving online access to or hard copies in advance. Lucky you indeed!!

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