Fireworks

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Live - 'The Turn' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/8f/4c/1e/Live-The-Turn-54-1425677169.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     March 06, 2015    
 
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One of the most commercial and easily accessible albums the band have ever produced.

The comeback of American Alt-Rock legends Live sees them return without iconic front-man Ed Kowalcyzk. This fact alone could divide opinion on the new album 'The Turn' if you're full-on Team Kowalcyzk and refuse to think of the band being any good without his involvement. I have to admit I'm a big fan of Kowalcyzk and I've enjoyed his solo releases since Live's hiatus, but as a consistent fan of the bands output since their breakthrough album 'Throwing Copper', I was hopeful the new Live line-up could still excite me.

The remaining trio of original band members drafted in Chris Shinn of Unified Theory to take on the role of front-man and given the popularity of the man he's replacing, it's an unenviable position of elevated expectation. For me it will always be about the music and the songs; if the band sucks without Kowalcyzk or Rock nicely with Shinn then so be it... let the music do the talking!

You can tell this is a Live album; a lot of those markers of familiarity are there but it is a very different album to what has gone before. Obviously the most different aspect is Shinn's vocals that have a smoother style and he never tries to mimic Kowalcyzk, so it makes it really feel like something different even though some of those obvious Live touches remain present. In a bizarre way the band pushes their sound forward by drawing a lot of influence from their early work with 'Mental Jewellery' and '...Copper'. Not all the songs have an obvious Live touch but on those that do, I find the influence to be linked to either of those two early albums which should intrigue fans who haven't enjoy their latter day releases.

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I would say '...Turn' is one of the most commercial and easily accessible albums the band have ever produced. I personally believe this release stands well amongst their back catalogue and I thoroughly enjoyed it, especially the more "radio friendly" tracks which just get under your skin. 'Don't Run To Wait' is a hook-laced track with a smooth and infectious chorus and along with driven commercial Rocker 'We Open The Door' (which has a chorus that gets stuck in your head) are extremely pleasurably and both are obvious highlights. It is an overall consistently strong album and in my opinion should leave established fans very happy as they do stay true to their sound whilst moving onto their next chapter.

I have to say I was really pleased with 'The Turn' and it has become a welcome addition to my Live collection and I look forward to this new era for the band.

Paul Woodward

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