(8/10) Harry Hess and his band ended their five years hiatus in 2013. It was the 20 years anniversary edition of their awesome “Mood Swings” album that also included three new songs. Working on those felt like a re-energizer for the band, leading to the 2014 longplayer “Thirteen”. This album brought Harem Scarem back on the map and three years later a new output strengthens this position.
Harem Scarem are back with full force. “United” is the title of this longplayer and you can feel the unity in each of the tracks. From the first to the last note the band offers great melodic hardrock. The title track is in pole position and kicks things off. With an oriental guitar riff the tune starts a bit unusual, developing into a light-hearted rocker. Harem Scarem includes on this album fans love from the Canadians – great hooks, big choruses and a powerful rocking guitar. All this comes back in tunes like “Bite the Bullet”, “The Sky is Falling” and “Heaven and Earth”.
The best song though is the heavily grooving “Sinking Ship” which is, together with the title track, my favorite track on the album.To balance the rocking tunes the album also needs some silent moments. Now, I don’t want to say that “One of Life’s Mystery” is a ballad. It’s a tune that comes close to AOR with a piano-based start that’s quiet and peaceful.
Harem Scarem is one of the most exciting bands in melodic hardrock and this record makes it clear: Harry Hess and Co presents what the best melodic hardrock can offer these days.
- Here Today Gone Tomorrow
- Sinking Ship
- One of Life’s Mysteries
- No Regrets
- Bite the Bullet
- Things I Know
- The Sky is Falling
- Heaven and Earth
Label: Frontiers Music
Release Date EU: May 12th, 2017