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Starbreaker Love's Dying Wish Frontiers Records
FRCD383
· Produced By: Harnell / Karlson

· Running Time: 52.43

· Release Date: Out Now

· Released:

· Musical Style: Hard Rock / Melodic Metal

· Links: Frontiers Starbreaker
97%
Songs: 98%
Sound: 97%
The debut Starbreaker album turned some heads. It repositioned vocalist Tony Harnell into a new realm and set him up to continue a respected career outside the confines of what he was best known for in TNT.
The heavier melodic metal direction suited Tony perfectly and the pairing of him and star guitarist Magnus Karlsson could not have been better.
Love's Dying Wish sees the band deliver a slightly different release, keeping the base that was the debut and adding some new elements.
Different yes, but just as good and perhaps even better. A revised line-up step up and place themselves well and truly on the international hard rock/metal landscape.
I love everything this album has to offer – it is even more diverse than the debut, it is darker and more aggressive and it has a monster sound that outshines the first album and the added production effects makes it very contemporary and open to a wide audience.
New bassist Jonni Lightfoot is all over this record, with a thumping beat that meshes with drummer John Macaluso to deliver an ear crunching rhythm section.
Magnus Karlsson is also a revelation. He has never sounded so heavy and aggressive, yet the riffs continue to help drive the melodies behind the songs.
The choice of a further tuned down contemporary sound again helps make this record a modern commercial hard rocking masterpiece. I'm not normally one to advocate the down-tuning of guitars, but in doing so on this record, the guys give themselves a whole new attitude that just sells itself.
Tony Harnell has also made the interesting choice of delivering more vocals in a lower register, with a menacing rasp at times, making those trademark higher pitch melodies and squeals even more effective and powerful when they arrive. And there are plenty of them…but they are used to blow the songs apart with soaring vocal lines rather than drive the song that way from the start.
And the constant use of harmonies throughout only helps these choruses stick in your head. The strength of songwriting is what really makes this album a revelation.
There simply are no secondary songs – every track is a winner and the ones with seemingly less melodic drive are perfect foil for the songs that follow and in their own way have embedded melodies that grow on you with time, showing the true depth of the material here.
Hard to pick out highlights here as every track has a melody and a good chorus and some songs have different roles to play.
The punishing modern metal vibe of the opening two songs End Of Alone and Evaporate set up the tone of the album and allow the fabulously intense and dramatic Love's Dying Wish to blow through the speakers. The chorus here is classic Tony Harnell.
Unknown Superstar is as catchy as Tony Harnell can be.
Live Your Life has a thumping beat, a menacing vocal and another magnificent chorus; Evaporate has a dark tone mixed with an uplifting riff which makes for a great listen; Changes Me is simply phenomenal. The moody intro building to a thumping beat and a gigantic chorus which makes this one of the songs of the year for me.
Building A Wall has a subtle melody that grows with each listen and This Close is a powerful ending to a powerful album.
The Bottom Line
Another fantastic release to add to this year's already impressive list of amazing releases. This is perhaps my favourite heavy album of the year to date. There has been some great AOR and melodic rock moments this year and now Starbreaker kick in with this intense and complex opus that I hope people understand.
There is a lot going on here and the more contemporary direction might not appeal to some, but at the heart of this album are some killer songs and killer performances. This is a world class hard rock record. Bring on album #3!
Discography / Previously Reviewed
· Starbreaker
· Love's Dying Wish

Line Up:
· Tony Harnell: Vocals
· Magnus Karlsson: Guitars
· John Macaluso: Drums
· Jonni Lightfoot: Bass

Essential For Fans Of:
· Starbreaker
· Tony Harnell
· Magnus Karlsson
· Westworld
Track Listing
· End Of Alone *
· Evaporate
· Love's Dying Wish *
· Unknown Superstar *
· Hide
· Building A Wall *
· Beautiful Disaster
· Live Your Life *
· Hello, Are You Listening?
· Changes Me *
· The Day Belongs To Us
· This Close

--*Best Tracks


11/01/09: Hoss1970 - Hollismccall@charter.net
Rating: 95
Rolled the dice based on a lot of the reviews and was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoy this album. Being a more of a lighter melodic rock fan, this album brings out my inner headbanger. Tony Harnell is one of the best high range rock vocalists in the industry. Magnus Karlson is also a well known commodity. What I like the best is what I think is one of the best drum performances I have heard in a long time. For any fan of harder melodic rock, this album is a must buy.

14/12/08: beto blanco from costa rica - roberto_beto1890@hotmail.com
Rating: 100
my 2008 favorite cd id just great i love Tony Harnell on vocals this is cd perfect

07/12/08: Denis - denisbf@terra.com.br
Rating: 65
Too boring, I loved the first cd but this one sounds too dark and I don't want to feel depressed or sad when I listen to music, I already have the news on tv... No memorable choruses, no beautiful melodies, to sum up, Disappointing!

06/12/08: Charles Williams - acoolguy88@hotmail.com
Rating: 90
WOW.....what are some of you smoking these days?? This CD roxx and is hands down more appealing than the first effort, or anything since My Religion by TNT. Not a bad song here.

04/12/08: Robert M Lisanti - robmlisanti@aol.com
Rating: 85
I like this cd...not as good as the first cd or the TNT stuff, but decent

29/11/08: Doug - gtrstr@hotmail.com
Rating: 30
I'm sorry, but this is terrible. I love Tony Harnell's voice, but the songs here just aren't memorable and are way to modern sounding. The first Starbreaker cd was better as was the FAR superior first one from Westworld.

19/08/08: Derrick - dherman1971@yahoo.com
Rating: 92
Still listening to this but so far its very good! Only criticism might be that it sounds just like the first release.

18/08/08: YNGWIEVIKING - cedric.vacquier@wanadoo.fr
Rating: 80
IMO the STARBREAKER shows a new writing direction For MAGNUS KARLSSON even if you can obviously find some similarities with his past works !
even if it's not my favorite album by MAGNUS, i think this one will resist the test of time better than the first one !
Maybe people are getting tired of him because he was all over the place recently !
Maybe his overexposure is guilty as it can be the case for TOMMY DENANDER ??? JORN ??? Remember J.S.S. ten years ago !!
But this guy show so much talent that we have to ask ourselves if the songs are good or not ?
And then you must listen to "love's dying wish "title track BEAUTIFUL DARK AOR...WHAT THE F***K is DARK AOR ??? You have to check "building a wall"!!!!
THUMBS up concerning the TONY HARNELL's performances ,even if he sing in a lower range because of the down tuning guitars ,he'is still fantastic and unbeatable in high pitched melodies like "unknown superstar"


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