Reviews roundup – Deep Purple vs. Edenbridge vs. Wille & The Bandits

 
71nvhevybdl-_sl1200_DEEP PURPLE
Time For Bedlam
earMusic

Deep Purple have just released the new single “Time for Bedlam,” a track from their upcoming album, ‘inFinite’. They’ve been hinting heavily that this could be their swansong both in the studio and on the road so I’ve been hoping that would give them a kick up the arse.

And to an extent they have. This is a strong latter day Purple song full of energy and as the lead track on this limited edition EP it certainly raises hopes for the forthcoming album. It’s a fairly high energy number with a couple of prog type time changes and nuances that work well.

I’m not unconvinced that the vocals have had a lot of “treatment” but Bob Ezrin has done a good job of capturing the Purple sound. That’s followed with a non-album B-side in the shape of “Paradise Bar” which grooves along in mid-tempo style and is as good as anything they’ve done in the studio of late.

Things are rounded off with an instrumental version of “Uncommon Man” which is previously unreleased and a rehearsal recording of “Hip Boots” the final version of which will be on the album. The former didn’t interest me, the latter four track recording shows just how good the musicians are even in a naked format.

It’s better than I thought it would be so fingers crossed for “inFinite”.

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81dm1fetnpl-_sl1500_EDENBRIDGE
The Great Momentum
Steamhammer / SPV

Female fronted symphonic metal bands have come and gone but Austria’s Edenbridge are still here seventeen years on from their debut album, “Sunrise in Eden”, back in 2000.

Vocalist Sabine Edelsbacher and multi-instrumentalist Lanvall are still the mainstays of the band with the latter also having graduated to the role of producer. Their latest release is a strong one which at times teeters over into the world of prog metal. But that’s no bad thing, especially as it’s always rooted firmly on the metal side of things. There is a lot on offer to genre fans from the opening Star Trek inspired ‘Shiantara’ right through to the glorious closing epic that is the twelve minute finale, ‘The Greatest Gift of All’, which throws a kitchen sink, a choir and an orchestra into the mix. As it should be.

As with the last album, this was mixed by Karl Groom (Threshold) and it really does have a big, big sound. Vocalist Erik Martensson (Eclipse, W.E.T, Nordic Union) pops up to harmonise and it also heralds the arrival of new drummer, Johannes Jungreithmeier.

The fancy edition comes with a second disc of instrumental versions and it’s definitely an album fans of symphonic metal will want to hear.

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wille-and-the-bandits-steal-e1474841542492-192x192WILLE & THE BANDITS
Steal
Jig-Saw Records

Blues from darkest Cornwall, three piece Wille And The Bandits have turned into road dogs touring everywhere as well as picking up support slots with the likes of Status Quo, (the above featured) Deep Purple and Joe Bonamassa amongst others.

They’ve also found time to bung out a few albums with the last one, “Grow”, coming out in 2013. I can’t claim that it rocked my boat as they veered through a variety of styles but this one is a whole lot better. They’ve got back to their roots, literally, as they recorded this live to analogue tape on some retro gear and the sound really works.

It’s full on seventies blues rock but with a vital and lively sound that just energises. For sure, they’ve still got some funky gumbo going on straight from the Mofro handbook as well as some dark rock overtones. And when Don Airey from the aforementioned Deep Purple pops into to add some Hammond groove to ‘Miles Away’, ‘Scared Of The Sun’ and ‘Bad News’ then they really do reach some new highs. A great return to form.

http://www.willeandthebandits.com/

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