Today see the release of not one but two outstanding LPs from the Frontiers SRL stable. Both of these slabs of Scandinavian melodic rock are worthy of the title “Genre Defining” and show the world that melodic rock is alive and kicking and growing ever stronger.
First up W.E.T. with “Retransmission”. W.E.T truly epitomizes what melodic rock has become in the new decade. The key element at the foundation of W.E.T has always been to create a modern melodic hard rock sound that will drive the genre into the future. Combining powerhouse rhythms and top-notch production, the music is equally classic and contemporary. “Retransmission” is nothing else than an absolute milestone, which is well in keeping with the tradition established by the three amazing records that have preceded this one.
Starting with a genre-defining self-titled debut, Robert Såll (the “W” from Work of Art), Erik Mårtensson (the “E” from Eclipse), and Jeff Scott Soto (the “T” from Talisman) accepted the daunting task to give that debut a follow-up, “Rise Up”. After that stellar follow-up, their third opus, “Earthrage”, cemented a legacy of music which will stand the test of time.
The LP opens with 3 straight-ahead rockers. They showcase the immense production and huge sound that these musicians can produce and is every bit an opening salvo to be proud of. However, we must also pay credit to the mixing up of styles that appear here. Whilst the sound is hard and driving the subtleties of classic AOR to come through on each track. Following the obligatory ballad (a classic in its own right), the musical styles continue to get mixed and matched with swagger and skill. If screaming guitar solos, melodic soaring vocals and keyboard soundscapes are your bag, then this LP does not disappoint. Soto and Mårtensson trade vocal gymnastics whilst Såll and the rest of the band provide melodic goodness that is second to none.
Of course, there is more than a nod back to the sound of 80’s AOR, but this is not hidden and neither should it be. We can only hope that they will get to tour this album soon and we can enjoy this huge sound live. I for one cannot wait.
Review: Mark Ellis
Big Boys Don’t Cry
The Moment Of Truth
The Call Of The Wild
Got To Be About Love
How Far To Babylon
What Are You Waiting For
You Better Believe It
How Do I Know
One Final Kiss
Jeff Scott Soto: Lead Vocals
Erik Martensson: All Rhythm Guitar, Some Lead Guitar, Backing Vocals & Keyboards