Lost On The Road To Eternity
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Lost on the Road to Eternity
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The release of their latest album, Lost On The Road To Eternity sees British hard rock band Magnum celebrate a very special anniversary on January 19th 2018. It will be the 20th studio recording by the group surrounding founding members Bob Catley (vocals) and Tony Clarkin (guitar) since their 1978 album Kingdom Of Madness. At the same time, Clarkin, Catley and bassist Al Barrow are set to introduce their current line-up featuring new additions Rick Benton (keyboards) and Lee Morris (drums). Cover art by Rodney Matthews, Contains bonus CD of four tracks recorded live in Spain in 2017.
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And now I have a huge problem. I'm about 5 listens into this new album, and I keep on feeling like I'm listening to music I've heard for years. Usually that would be a bad thing, as it suggests a lack of new ideas or at least a comfort zone of resting on past achievements. Yet, even though there is certainly a comfort zone on this road to eternity, there is also a danger zone. I think Tony has written some of his most personal material ever, and in the midst of the comfortable familiarity there is a gritty, playful edge that weaves its way through many of the new songs. So even though I have felt like I'm listening to (among others) The Visitation, Vigilante, Breath Of Life, Eleventh Hour and OASTN, when all is said and done it has become clear to me that I'm listening to something that somehow manages to be older than dirt yet brand sparkling new all at the same time.
I really do hope that Magnum can capitalize on the very encouraging signs of healthy sales for LOTRTE and get a small foothold down here in the USA. This music deserves to be heard. Having said that, it is difficult to say if this new release would be the best entry point into their 40 years of music, however of course that's going to be down to personal taste. My recommendation is that if anyone wants to give them a chance, and you are in any way a fan of melodic/symphonic/progressive rock with a focus on clear vocals, melody and heavy but not overwhelming riffing, then give this a go. Hopefully a new Magnum fan will be born, and then dive in to decades of wonderful new music.
The title track rocked and I suspected Tobias Sammett as one of the vocalists and turns out I was right. Soon I was reading about this band and was shocked to learn that they have been in the music industry for over 40 years and that this is in fact their 20th album , putting them in the league of legendary bands such as Iron Maiden and Saxon (2 of my favorite British metal bands).
Magnum's music is not metal (at least as far as this album is concerned). This is top of the shelf melodic hard rock and it kicks ass. Every single song on this album rocks. I am glad to have discovered this amazing band and plan to work back through their catalog . This is kind of exciting to follow a band's career in reverse ,that too one spanning decades of changing musical landscapes. I hope this journey that I plan to undertake is as fulfilling as promised by Magnum's kick ass 20th album - Lost On the Road to Eternity. Buy this album, it is awesome!!