Hair Metal Mansion correspondent DAWN OSBOURNE checks in with the following:
Nordic Union is the new Frontiers project fronted by Ronnie Atkins of Pretty Maids and Erik Martensson of Eclipse and WET and whilst the name may appear at first sight a bit boring having a political/geographical meaning, do not overlook this one as it is one of the most exciting releases in living memory! Ronnie says that Pretty Maids is still his first priority, but together these guys have created a real metal mutha and we don't think it will be going away any time soon.
The single 'Hypocrisy' has a monster riff, unforgettable, driving, absolute power designed to go to the guts of any true heavy metal fan. Listen to this a few times and it will become part of your DNA we guarantee it. Wickedly likely to take your soul!
But the true beauty of this album is that tracks are truly excellent across the board. Remember the old days when albums like 'Number of the Beast' delivered classics from wall to wall, albums that you would never part with and, once you listened you felt life would never be the same.. Then you're beginning to understand what we mean. Since we are now thirty years later, when it is much much harder to produce a body of material with such amazing strength, you can see how much we think of this album.
'The War has Begun' is a great opener, starting with delicate almost medieval keyboards, kicking in immediately to the kind of loud guitar riffs that will have you stretching your neck in ecstasy and then segueing to a catchy, but delightfully melodic heavy chorus with some killer shredding follow up, what more can you ask for! 'Wide Awake' combines the genius of some killer aor and delicate counterpoints with a heavy, but melodic approach in the chorus, meaning that the song is memorable and durable. 'Every Heartbeat' is lighter in tone but with an accessibility which means this track could probably be covered by artists in a completely different genre, not that we are suggesting it, this belongs to us and we won't give it up! 'When Death is Calling' is delivered with a real energy that is infectious and sweeps you along. '21 Guns' keeps the momentum with the refrain 'do we care about the body count' which you're likely to be singing in the shower. 'Falling' is another track with pop sensibilities which translates really well to the use of powerful guitar instead of keyboards. 'The Other Side' has more of a rock n roll sound at times. 'Point of No Return' opens with killer keyboards and the track has a bit of a feel of the band 'Yes', although heavier than 'Yes' typically were. "True love awaits you' demonstrates that epic power ballads is territory this album effortlessly covers and the fact that so many analogies can be drawn with classic bands and epic sounds gives you an idea where this album belongs, up there with some of Desmond Child's finest. 'Go' rounds off the album in fine fashion, giving us the thoughts that there must be plenty of gems where all this came from.
This kind of stuff keeps metal alive as a genre! If you do not have this album rush out and buy it. It's going to be one of the albums of the decade!!! You know when an album feels like a re-awakening, yes that! A one-off project album, we don't think so!!!
Courtesy of Hair Metal Mansion, www.hairbangersradio.ning.com