Reviews roundup – Dirkschneider vs. Eden’s Curse vs. Isobel Holly
Live – Back To The Roots
I’m so old I actually saw Udo Dirkschneider back in his original Accept days. They were proper metal even if “London Leatherboys” could cause grown men to collapse with laughter. Assuming they still could after the nad crunching of “Balls To The Wall”. Now Accept may still be on the go with their third vocalist (Mark Tornillo) but after two reunions with Udo, it seems we won’t see it again as Dirkschneider lays his Accept days to rest with a twenty four track, double album of Accept classics.
To be fair, his growl has lost a lot of its potency over the last few years, but his is approaching his old age pension so I can cut him some slack. His current lineup may lack some of the fire of Accept in their prime but when they’re rattling through some bona fide metal anthems like “Princess of the Dawn”, “Balls to the Wall”, “Fast as a Shark”, “London Leatherboys”, and “Breaker” you’re not really going to go wrong.
He also digs deep for a few unexpected outings of numbers like “TV War”, and “Flash Rockin’ Man” which will make many an aged Accept fan very happy indeed. The riffs and solos from Andrey Smirnov and Kasperi Heikkinen stick close to the originals so there are no complaints in that department, and anything that makes me feel 18 again can’t be a bad thing. Apart from realising I’m not. Heavy and Metal.
Three years on from ‘Symphony of Sin’ and the Scottish / German / Serbian / Finnish melodic metal are back with their fifth and best album.
It sees yet another lineup change with new boys in the shape of keyboardist Christian Pulkinnen and drummer John Clelland but it also sees their finest array of material to date. To be honest, Eden’s Curse have always been a bit of a Chinese takeaway to me. I enjoyed their albums but couldn’t remember what it tasted like half an hour later, but that won’t be the case with this one.
And it really is down to songs such as “Sell Your Soul”, “Jericho”, “Unconditional” (featuring former Leaves’ Eyes vocalist Liv Kristine) and even the ballad “Find My Way”. Every one lives up to repeated plays and with a spot on production from Dennis Ward this is an album that is built to last.
They haven’t broken through to the big time yet but this should be the one to push them over. Fantastic.
Now for a bit of variety we’re heading off to Bath to listen to a young singer / songwriter called Isobel Holly. And when I say young I mean young.
She’s been composing her own musich since she was eleven and even though she’s still at school she released her debut EP, ‘The Right Way Up’ last year. She’s done a few BBC sessions and is now building up to the release of her second EP with this single.
She has an amazingly soulful voice for a young ‘un, but it’s the quality of her songwriting that really catches your attention. She’s operating in that seventies influenced singer / songwriter style with hints of folk, soul and pop and owns up to her biggest inspirations being Carole King and Joni Mitchell. There’s shades of Stevie Nicks in there as well, and if she carries on this way, it can only be a matter of time before fame comes knocking.