Angel - 'Risen'

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Angel - 'Risen'

A triumphant return for Angel and proof they still can rock our world.

This is a triumphant return for Angel and proof they still can rock our world! Grandeur was always an essential part of the commencement of an Angel show and this album opens with the Angel theme which, although an original piece, has all the hallmarks of a classical composition; it's a hint of the quality music to come.

However, 'Risen' is soon into the rocking business with the single 'Under The Gun' and what hits you immediately is how Frank Dimino's siren-like distinctive vocal tones, Punky Meadows' superb guitar and the prominent keyboards of Charlie Calv build the Angel DNA which is still a fine animal indeed. Dimino has one of the finest voices around, and he is not shy to give you all he's got on tracks like 'Our Revolution', and they still deliver catchy AOR which you can witness on 'Shot Of Your Love', 'Over My Head' and 'IOU'.

The excellent songs throughout the release were written originally by both guitarists, Meadows and Danny Farrow, with additional input from Dimino. I love Meadows' passionate playing and tone, and he knows just when to hold back and when to climax, for example, 'Slow Down', '1975' and 'I Don't Want You to Go'. I love the lyrics too; "remember the night when Notre Dame burnt to the ground, like you and me it all came tumbling down" ('Tell Me Why').

Angel can still give your ears a good seeing to with Glam anthems and blistering guitar as found on tracks like 'We Were The Wild' and 'Locked, Cocked, Ready To Rock'. 'Desire' is my personal favourite, which I guarantee will reach your brain and never leave; it's full of smouldering sensuality and reaches parts other bands can't touch – I can't wait to hear it live.

Calv also gets a chance to show off his Progressive, space-age finger-work as highlighted on the intro to 'My Sanctuary'. They revisit 'The Tower' at the end, which reflects the version from the live record with its lush keyboard intro and heavier centre. It manages to keep those who love Prog happy, while always keeping things interesting.

This album was everything I hoped it would be. Angel influenced so many that followed them, and they're still influencing groups like The Struts today. As they didn't tour the UK back in the day we sadly missed out. Therefore, if you're unaware of the Angel phenomena, don't make that same mistake again.

Dawn Osborne

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