Audiovision is born again. Singer Christian Liljegren (ex-Narnia, Divinefire aso) started the band as a side project in 2003, with totally different musicians around him. The debut The Calling came out in 2004. Since then, Christian has left both Narnia and Divinefire and this version of Audiovision is now his main priority musically. They have already opened up for legendary Stryper on a couple of gigs and now it's finally time to release the second album, Focus.
Christian does his perhaps best singing performance ever on record on this one. He impersonates rule models such as Ronnie James Dio and Michael Sweet with nothing to be ashamed of. What I miss is a bit more hooks in the choruses and melodies. It is very straightforward heavy metal, which is all fine, but it needs some further edge here and there.
Invitation kicks off with a heavy riff and delivers the most direct chorus and an old style keyboard solo. Keep The Fire Burning continues with the same uncompromising attitude and message. Christian Liljegren gives away a scream and goes on to show all spectres of his voice during the soft verse and hard chorus.
We Are Not Alone is a typical example of a song that need a bit more edge in the chorus to really stand out. The Son Will Come is something for all fans of Ronnie James Dio. It is heavy midtempo, with strong singing and a nice guitar solo part. You Are The Reason is a totally different piece, with industrial intro and soft choirs.
We Will Go increases the tempo a couple of notches and includes some classic roaring crowd sounds. I Will Belong To You could be something from Rainbow's Dio years.
The cover of Stryper's The Way may be an unnecessary feature, being quite similar to the original and all (although a choir part is added in the middle). But it is nicely done, and Christian once again gets to show his vocal abilities. The Gate is a mighty ballad, which as well could have been an old Rainbow song. The instrumental title track sounds very familiar, but I cannot place it. Maybe some of you know?
Anyhow, this is on one hand the 70s and 80s hard rock
revitalised and still something that is fresh and relevant today. With
Narnia now apparently out of the picture, I hope that Audiovision will
take over the torch and keep it burning for a long time.