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painofsalvation roadsalttwo
Artist: Pain Of Salvation
Title: Road Salt Two
Genre: Progressive Metal
Release Date: 26th September 2011
Label: Insideout


Album Review

PAIN OF SALVATION, a quartet from Sweden tick several boxes... broad vocal range, abrupt switching from turbulent to calm passages, intense syncopation and polyrhythmic experiments, their albums are based on concepts dealing with serious issues, they also tick a box of longevity as they’ve been around since 1984. We haven’t finished with ticking the boxes yet - another point is that their Progressive sounds leans towards the era of ‘70’s rather than its modern incarnations, however, it’s not as fluffy and dreamy as it was then, but rather it’s has a feeling of straightforwardness and of clarity. Their forthcoming album ‘Road Salt Two’ as the title suggest is a continuation and that is of the ‘Road Salt One’ released last year. As usual it is within the parameter within their outlook to polarise concepts, thoughts and so on, this album is a darker reply to the down-to-earth, carefree spirited first one.

‘Road Salt Theme’ intro is quite interesting, in a way unusual in its completely fused hard rock with the aforementioned flirtation with 70’s psychedelic Prog Rock, and this time also with a good touch of blues, some folkish, country elements that will be heard within the songs to follow also and the way they experiment with the trends here and rearrange them nearly beyond recognition is a major element of what is to be admired about this album of theirs. ‘Healing Now’ one of the emotive, vocally well narrated song of trials of the road (life), darker and for some maybe a tad moany but then it seems to be a stand-in for grunge mood-wise. Musically I like it’s slightly country / folk tone. The lyrical narration is cohesive throughout even if slightly clichéd but the sound transcends this enough to find one’s own twists into it. At times I feel like watching some kind of an urban western, a trajectory of many things over imposed over one another and creating a kaleidoscopic impression. Even something dramatic in ‘To The Shoreline’ which was one of the definite favourites of the albums. Evocative and alluring song, the flute, the piano touches furthering my liking of it.

‘The Deeper Cut’ I enjoyed for the vocals especially and the vocal interaction with the others towards its end and the way the song just fades away with this. It’s a strong and even quietly intense song. Another remark I’ll make is about ‘The Physics Of Gridlock’, although it has a psychedelic feel, it’s not one to get lost in and have one’s head spinning in someone else’s trip, but actually enjoyable in its clear headed way, enough to take the interesting points of music with a sober feeling so to speak. I found it another great song for sure - even more so for its inclusion of French at the end, which give it an evocative edge and even a theatrical element. What I enjoy with PAIN OF SALVATION is that they don’t want just to tread water; they don’t play to please the fans with a well-tested formula but seek their vision beyond comfort zones. This is an interesting album and especially from that point it’s surely one to pick to check out at least, if nothing else.


Tracklist

01. Road Salt Theme (0:44)
02. Softly She Cries (4:15)
03. Conditioned (4:15)
04. Healing Now (4:29)
05. To the Shoreline (3:03)
06. Eleven (6:55)
07. 1979 (2:52)
08. The Deeper Cut (6:10)
09. Mortar Grind (5:46)
10. Through the Distance (2:56)
11. The Physics of Gridlock (8:43)
12. End Credits (3:25)


Line-up

Daniel Gildenlöw - vocals/guitar
Johan Hallgren - guitar/vocals
Leo Margarit - drums/vocals
Fredrik Hermansson - keys/vocals


Websites

www.painofsalvation.com / www.myspace.com/painofsalvation / www.facebook.com/painofsalvation


Cover Picture

painofsalvation roadsalttwo


Rating

Music: 8
Sound: 9
Total: 8.5 / 10


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