Fireworks

Sondura - 'Live Before You Die' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/a2/93/7a/2332_SonduraLiveBeforeYouDie_1339775363.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     June 15, 2012    
 
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An extremely promising release from a band with great potential in the Melodic Rock genre.

I asked the band for a copy of this CD when I saw them opening for Tyketto on their tour in December; as like those around me in the crowd I was impressed with their performance. Danny Vaughn said he’d heard their soundcheck and was similarly impressed.

This album came out in 2009 so it’s surprising they’ve not come to our attention earlier; clearly they need to work on their PR and design of the liner notes which I found impossible to read.

That aside, it has to be said that for an independent release this is one of the stronger ones I’ve encountered. The production is crisp with good separation between the various instruments; and the vocals are well balanced. Unusually, the band sound heavier on CD than they did in the live setting but fortunately, for my taste, they stay just the right side of tuneful and melodic rather than letting their undoubted energy and power overshadow the songs.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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Live I was reminded of ‘Gods of AOR’ favourites Emerald Rain thanks to the song structures and delivery; this holds true on CD, albeit Sondura are heavier and with a modern twist. The title track opens proceedings and sets out the band’s stall immediately as it rattles along on a stunning riff and strong hooks. The gang vocal on the chorus doesn’t quite work and the screaming towards the end of the song from otherwise fine vocalist, Tom Watson, rankles a bit. ‘Scars’ has another fine riff and hook but the guitar solo from Jack Watson is too widdly and frenetic. The riffs keep coming and it’s not until fourth track, ‘Black and White’ that they take the pace down with a delightfully restrained opening before they kick in with yet huge riff. I like this song a great deal. ‘Falling Tree’ has a Country Rock vibe at its outset before following a similar path to the previous track. ‘A Thousand Miles’ has something of Talisman to it, ‘Fake’ has a guitar refrain redolent of Queensrÿche while the stand out track is ‘Last Man Standing’; it impressed me live and I wasn’t mistaken in that view.

This is an extremely promising release from a band with great potential in the Melodic Rock genre, which means losing those moments of screaming and yelling that seem to be in the mix to make them sound more modern.

Gary Marshall

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