Let me start this review by stating that Sunrise To Sundown, the new album of Spiritual Beggars (SB), is not a prog album. In fact it has nothing to do with progressive rock whatsoever. That doesn't mean that I don't like this album in advance, but it's just a fact I would like to mention before you read this review. Spiritual Beggars is the band of guitar picker Michael Amott, who's also known as a member of the death metal band Arch Enemy. However, the music of SB has really nothing to do with death metal either- thank god for that by the way - as it is straightforward hard rock in the vein of Deep Purple, Uriah Heep, Whitesnake and Rainbow.
Diamond Under Pressure, the first single of this album, is almost a Deep Purple rip off and What Doesn't Kill You could have been a Rainbow song, but who cares as the music is played with great enthusiasm and dedication. All the eleven songs are highly dynamic with lots of energy, drama, great hooks, riffs, catchy choruses - sometimes almost anthem-like - and of course excellent guitar solos played by Amott. My favorite tracks are Hard Road, No Man's Land, Lonely Freedom and the last track of the album Southern Star, featuring an overwhelming guitar solo.
Sunrise To Sundown is a rare album, an absolute corker, as it is fresh, familiar, spontaneous and highly addictive. So bring out your air guitar and start playing, head banging and singing along to these eleven great stoner, grunge and hard rock tracks and enjoy Sunrise To Sundown as much as I do!
***+ Martien Koolen (edited by Peter Willemsen)
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