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Europe - Start From The Dark

=Staff's pick

Got To Have Faith*
Start From The Dark*
Wake Up Call
Song No. 12
Roll With You
Spirit Of The Underdog*
Settle For Love

Genre Hard Rock
Joey Tempest
Tracks 12
John Norum
Runningtime 49 Min.
Label Epic Records
John Leven
Release 22 Sept. 2004
Ian Haugland
Country USA
Mic Michaeli
Similar artists Tesla

And so they are back at last. Europe has re-united and is ready to take on the world yet again. And the album starts well with the catching groove in the opening track Got To Have Faith, and it feels like they are gonna to be counted with again. Not sure if it is right to compare their new album with any of the old ones, the style has changed and it is not as youthfully naive and hard as on the earlier ones and not as much of tired hard rock as on Prisoners In Paradise. Naturally they have matured, and so has their music.

It is surprisingly heavy riffing in the title track Start from the dark, they greatly manage to combine heaviness and emotion within the realms of melodic hard rock, and with the significant John Norum guitar sound it comes out in a great way. The album has a really good trio of songs at the start and there is a couple of more tracks that comes out really well on their comeback but unfortunately it then slows down. It moves on into a insignificant sounding landscape with uninspired tracks like the mid tempo Hero and the incredible boring ballad Roll With You, that makes me quickly reach for the skip button on my remote. As with the peppy pop track in Sucker, and as they so nicely laid out the word for me - it sucks!

In the end it is a good album that perhaps is a bit uneven and even if Tempest/Norum are back as song-writing partners, some songs feels like they are made a bit too simple. What saves the album at times, is the superb guitar playing from John Norum and the great voice from Joey Tempest, and those parts are the essence of what make Europe stick out and giving them their own sound, so they are to be separated from other bands. Norum has developed his guitar skills since he left Europe back in the days and has released several great soloalbums, and the playing we have learned to love on them is brought along when he's back home again.

See also review of: War Of Kings , Last Look At Eden , Live At Sweden Rock - 30th Anniversary Show






6 chalices of 10 - Thomas

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