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Metal/Prog Metal CD Reviews

Lunden Reign

American Stranger

Review by Gary Hill

This act is being billed as a progressive rock band. I don’t get that at all. I mean, we’re pretty inclusive in what we put under prog here at MSJ, but I just can’t make the argument for that at all. The metal label fits better, but it’s not a perfect fit either. Still, it’s close enough that we’re going to put this there. Overall, this is closer to a pop rock sound. It’s got some particularly catchy songs. As metal, it comes in closer to the nu-metal pop based end of the spectrum. All that categorization aside, this female fronted act is quite good.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2015  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Love In Free Fall

Powering in hard edged and furious, this is melodic metal that really rocks. I love the female vocal performance here and there are some great instrumental and vocal hooks built into this thing. The guitar has a great sound, too.

The Savage Line
There is more of a mainstream rock sound, merge with hair metal elements. Violin adds quite a bit to this piece. There are even some hints of modern country music on this piece. It’s catchy, energetic and a lot of fun.
28IF (Without, Which Not)
There are moments of this that make me think of Alice Cooper just a bit. The hook on this is among the best here. The song is built on a hard edged, fast paced metallic structure. The bridge on this is another passage that has some links to modern country music.
Hush & Whispers
More of a hair metal turned modern vibe permeates this rocker. It has some great moments and a lot of energy.
American Stranger
There is almost a Beatles-like vibe here. The cut also features a lot of that modern country element. Still, there is enough crunch and oomph to land it in the metal end of things. Albeit, it’s like modern pop rock based metal.
Hear Me
I love this song. It feels very much like a dramatic epic metal piece. It’s powerful and hard rocking. Yet the edge is melodic. There are even hints of world music here. The hooks aren’t left behind despite all that’s added here. There are some real powerhouse moments here, yet it also drops back to a piano based mellower segment.
Mary
Epic metal, hair metal and even some country merge on this rocker. It’s more like a power ballad than anything else. It’s quite a strong tune, though. There are some particularly potent vocal parts here and some great bits of guitar work.
The Light
Metal merges with a blues country element, world music and both. This is an unusual, but very effective piece that works extremely well. In fact, this is one of my favorites here. I really like this number a lot.
When Love Lies
More of a straight rock and roll vibe is blended with metal and more here. This is a real stomper, but it has some great layers of sound over the top, too.
It’s about Time
This rocker has a bluesy edge and a definite country element from the vocals. The metal vibe still shows up here, but this is more of a pure pop rock tune.
 
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