Wuthering Heights - 'Salt'

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Wuthering Heights - 'Salt'

Great songs, production, vocals and musicianship.

Wuthering Heights are the kind of band you see lumped in with the usual references of sounding like Maiden, Helloween, Sonata Arctica and the rest, yet that is only the tip of the iceberg. For me the band’s use of folk tinged melodies and the way that they arrange their songs, brings to mind acts as diverse as say Falconer, early Rhapsody, Dio, Rainbow and even on a couple of songs, Thin Lizzy. Yet having all these different styles could make the music of Wuthering Heights a little overbearing, thankfully main man Erik Ravn has a firm grasp on things and the band temper these styles with ease making ‘Salt’ one hell of an album.

Having Nils Patrick Johansson on lead vocals never really hurts either, as his titanic Dio like vocal presence drives the songs on ‘Salt’ like an out of control racing car. So aficionados of clever progressive melodic metal with a symphonic edge could do worse than to check out songs as strong as ‘The Desperate Poet’, ‘The Mad Sailor’ with it’s superb guitar work, or ‘Water Of Life’ where the band show just how versatile they are, dropping most of their symphonic excesses for an almost hard rock approach to their song writing, and then settling back to enjoy closing track ‘Lost At Sea’, which is seventeen minutes of sweeping time changes, clever orchestrations and amazing music.

Why this band are not higher up on the progressive metal ladder is hard to fathom as they have everything they need to be right at the top of the tree. The songs, the production, the vocals, the musicianship, everything. Maybe with ‘Salt’ Wuthering Heights will get the recognition they deserve.

Ian Johnson

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