Author: UberAdmin

Overhead – ‘Haydenspark’ (Self-Released)

When a band prefaces their description of their music with the word “progressive”, that, as far as UR boss Monk is concerned anyway, naturally comes with certain preconceptions. When he sees the word “progressive” in a band’s biog, then he expects them to do something that is just that: break down musical boundaries, or push themselves to create new ones, rather than just adhere to accepted, airy-fairy norm of the genre whose name they employ. So, it was a pleasant surprise to discover that Finnish quartet Overhead do just that, albeit in a confusing and somewhat disconcerting manner which actually made it difficult to comes to terms with this, their fifth studio album, released on the cusp of their 20th anniversary year:

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Soufly – ‘Ritual’ (Nuclear Blast)

The idea of a latter-day critical resurgence is a rock trope that doesn’t look to be dying any time soon. No matter how many old guard bands pump out consistently solid material, no matter how many manage to exist in a perpetual state of cult acclaim, it seems the options for older, established bands are limited. Option A: go through the rigmarole of changing yourselves completely, running the risk of alienating original fans, irking critics and damaging your credibility. Option B: Continue doing what you do, falling so far from relevance that when the tides of music inevitably roll around again the same sound that put you on top in the first place is enough to put you right back at the top of the pile again.

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Blood Red Saints – ‘Love Hate Conspiracies’ (AOR Heaven)

Monk first came across Blood Red Saints at one of the HRH AOR fests a few years back and, despite not being familiar with the band beforehand, was immediately smitten by their highly polished brand of melodic rock. Their paths have crossed a few times since – most recently at last October’s Rockingham fest, when singer Pete Godfrey briefly joined Bailey on stage. At those few meetings, he has found the frontman to be one of the most affable, and funniest, fellas in this dirty ol’ rock ‘n’ roll game, always smiling and ready to talk to fans (even in the wee small hours of the morning). One thing that has been missing in this period has been new material from BRS… a situation now rectified with this release.

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