ACACIA AVENUE - Cold (Review)

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Produced By: 
Torben Enevoldsen
Running Time: 
48
Release Date: 
2014
Released: 
Europe
Musical Style: 
Melodic Rock
Score: 
83
Friday, August 8, 2014
Label: 
AOR Heaven
 
This is a solid melodic rock release indeed. The idea for Acacia Avenue began back in 2008, the brain child of guitarist Torben Enevoldsen (Fate, Fatal Force, Section A).
This is his second album and again sees Torben delivering some melodic rock tunes instead of his normally more metal-themed music. To handle vocals, Torben has gathered a number of guest vocalists to fill frontman duties.
 
These kinds of albums can appear very disjointed, but the quality of the production here is such that it all flows pretty seamlessly.
Torben takes care of all the bass, keyboards and guitars, as well as singing background vocals on a few songs. New drummer, Dennis Hansen (Fatal Force) appears on drums. Good man for hiring an actual drummer, not a machine!
 
Song wise there are many highlights.
Time (feat. Steve Newman) is a first rate hard rocker, with Newman again getting heavier and sounding very comfortable doing it.
Love Will Survive (feat. Rob Moratti) is typically Moratti styled AOR with a very high vocal (of course) and a great chorus.
It's Over (feat. Albin Ljungqvist) is a wonderful little keyboard driven AOR number with a high pitch vocal and a highly memorable chorus.
Out Of The Business (feat. Mikael Roup) is another very catchy track that sounds more like Uriah Heep/Y&T. A little out of place here in the scheme of things, but catchy!
Signs Of Love (feat. Rob Moratti) is a melodic rock style track but doesn’t match the quality of his earlier track.
 
Cold (feat. Torben Lysholm) is about the same – ok, but not a highlight.
Angelina (feat. Steve Newman) is moody, but guitar driven and another great Steve Newman vocal.
You And I (feat. Mikael Roup) and Calling Out (feat. Nicklas Sonne) are skippers I’m afraid. They lack the hooks of previous songs.
How Many Nights (feat. Torben Lysholm) is better, but again is part of a group of songs that don’t match the quality of the first half of the record.
Freedom From Doubt (feat. Peter Sundell) features a strong bluesy vocal from Sundell and finishes the album with a different kind of song than anywhere else on the record.
 
A great first half of the album and an ok second half that requires a bit more attention to draw out the melodies. A solid record overall, which will stand comfortably alongside the debut. The best tracks are really special and worth the price of admission.
Very good production/mix quality lifts the results.
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Comments

Rating: 
55

Without a doubt, this is the worst album I've listened to all year... maybe in the last couple of years.  Lyrically, the songs are generally inept.  Musically, bland.  The singing is atrocious (with the exception of Rob Moratti, who sounds disinterested).  The production is at least solid.  Save your money for something more enjoyable... like a root canal.

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