metal talk
facebook
Type band name, album name, artists name etc here...
Search all our articles by typing band name, album name, artists name etc here...
news now
metal talk




  SALEM
'Forgotten Dreams'
(Pure Rock Records)


Roger Berzerk Fauske

Roger Berzerk Fauske

Pin It
Share |


salem

Salem, if you didn't know, are another one of the bands to come out of the ridiculously named NWOBHM movement back in the late 1970s. Formed from the remnants of Ethel The Frog in Hull in 1979, the band had a double A-side single released in 1982 but that was about as far as it got as they folded the following year.

That was until 2010 when their original recordings were re-released and as a result the band got back together again and following two limited edition EP's and countless gigs here and in Europe, the band now have a fully-fledged album out.

So now you have a brief background, it is time to see where it all fits musically. As much as I grew up with a lot of the NWOBHM bands, the problem is that too many of them still have that exact 'same sound' now which is all very well apart from the fact that musical development should happen in the space of 30 years.

So, before I confuse you any further, let's get down to business and see what Ged and co have produced musically.

Article continues below...

   


The good news is that Salem have developed musically, whilst still retaining the essence of their original sound. As if to prove a point the first track 'Forgotten Dreams' has its roots in the old era but the sound is a lot more modern.

It all kicks off with crunching riff and then the vocals of Simon Saxby comes in with some great melody on the verse. His voice has stood the test of time very well and has a lot of power in it without ever going over the top. The drums adding a lot more power, galloping, dragging the track with it leaving room for a very cool bass line.

The guitar solo is a little more interesting than the standard fayre as well, drifting over to a Middle Eastern progression early on before it all goes back to the catchy melodies and there is even room for some singalong chorus backings a la Bon Jovi – now there is a sign of progression from the NWOBHM days when that sort of thing was frowned upon (along with everything else that was slightly adventurous). A good opener, full of life and hopefully a sign of things to come.

Next up is 'High Stakes', a track you may have heard before from their EP. Powerful drums, twin guitars working well together with some interesting harmonic exchanges and traces of that Middle Eastern sound. Saxby's vocals again standing out in the clean mix – another well constructed song built around strong six string and larynx activities.

'When Love Is In Your Heart' owes more to the original NWOBHM sound than the previous two offerings, especially the riff and pounding rhythm section, the guitars especially grabbing this one by its dangly bits. But proving the old style can coexist quite happily with melody is the main achievement of this track, the vocals and faster, louder guitar fitting as perfectly together as Coldplay and a firing squad.

'This Heart Is Mine' starts off a little more sedately, well a lot more sedately, a little reminiscent in its first few bars of The Scorpions' 'Send Me An Angel' but that swiftly morphs into a classic rock riff, the second guitar coming in over the top, its strings sending out a passion filled melody, combining to give real feeling to the music. Saxby sings: "Lately I've been going nowhere" so clearly this one was written on the M25 on a Friday afternoon.

That aside, he again delivers a delicious vocal melody most noticeably on the chorus and the backing vocals, sparingly used, compliment it very well. This has a balladic feel to it although it is a very rocky number, delving into the root of all that is good towards the end, a touch of blues rock. This and the previous track are almost poles apart as far their origins but both are pulled off (steady on with your minds) equally well.

The interestingly named 'Kazakafnu' is next in line and features a very interesting guitar intro, one that keeps on going subtly behind the main riff. This heads off in a different direction entirely to anything on the album so far and has a harder more menacing edge to it.

More than anything, there is an evident melting pot of influences present on this one, Sabbath especially present throughout, and it does stand out because of the different structure and musically it is very well crafted, not the simplest of songs and at some points in the track you get the sense of the time signature changing. A good track and does well as a change in feel before the second half of the album and a definite sign of musical maturity since the days of…well, you know what.

'The Answer' is next, although I'm not totally sure of the question. But musically it is a nifty number, a good old fashioned rocker fuelled by the drumming, its pounding beat and rapid fills grabbing the ear. Vocally, Saxby gets a chance to show that he has quite a range to his voice on a straightforward but well executed song.

'Reach For Eternity' is a reworking of an old Salem number from way back in 1982 and features no nonsense guitar work with a riff that is about as straight to the point as you can get. The vocals are the driving force behind this one and in feel it is a little Dio like – think of the likes of 'We Rock'. The guitar solo in the middle is a very extravagant and ranging affair, a good reworking bringing a old song up to date very effectively.

'The Best Is Yet To Come' goes back to more quiet AOR beginnings, electro acoustic guitar but very up-tempo, vocals sitting neatly on top. Surprisingly in a way it works very well and is at ease with the heavier offerings on the album. The success of the song is in no small way down to its ability to stop short of descending into an archetypal self parody of this sort of track (If it was WASP, they would all be sat round a campfire and producing an epic fail) and Salem are comfortable enough with themselves now to be able to do the track justice.

'X-Rated' is the next f****ing song. Oh wait, that isn't an instruction to the reviewer. We are back to the heavier crunchier side of things with this one, the darkness to the light of the previous one. Owing a lot to the more post NWOBHM sound, some of the progressions give rise to memories of Rainbow in the days before Mr Blackmore started a relationship with the fairies in his garden and the result is good, plenty for the avid head shaker to get the teeth (or curling tongs) into.

'Break The Chains' has some soft rock beginning and is a well crafted song and one that builds but it isn't always sure which direction it should be going in. Don't get me wrong it has merits, the vocals standing out above anything else, but it is waiting for that spark to push it over the top and get matters really moving.

'Ask The Lonely' is nothing to do with Journey (surprising eh?) but it is a rocker, not the heaviest on the album but a rocker never the less. Featuring some guitar and drum interplay at the beginning before the vocals come in over the top, this one unlike the previous track really gets going. If you need comparisons you can detect some Sabbath/Ozzy influences in this one and some eighties classic rock feel.

So to the closer, 'Aftershock' which has a different feel to it even after the lengthy intro – again it rocks especially just after the one minute mark, Saxby's tone sounding a little like TNT's Tony Harnell and is a good if not spectacular way to finish things off.

So that is 'Forgotten Dreams' and it is a very good album, especially well mixed and packed full of well written songs. And as if to prove my earlier point, its success is down to the fact that they haven't just regurgitated the tried and tested NWOBHM recipes.

Whilst the movement played an important part in Rock music, many seem to forget that as well as the good, it produced more than its fair share of the bad and even a fair few of the downright ugly – ironically more than one of the bad actually made it big, and I mean huge... no names mentioned.

Salem's sound on this owes probably more to the classic rock end of things and they make very good use of the twin guitars who fit so well together. The drumming is very loud, very heavy and just damn good and with the bass makes a formidable rhythm section. The crowning glory though is the vocal input, versatile, varied, full of power, melody and passion and it is that which pushes it into the higher echelons.

Simon Saxby (vocals)
Paul Macnamara (guitar)
Mark Allison (guitar)
Adrian Jenkinson (bass)
Paul Mendham (drums)


beer beer beerbeerbeer


11.6.14





Pin It
Share |








 

kiss KISS EUROPEAN TOUR CANCELLED?
German and Italian dates have been removed from the official website...

stone free STONE FREE FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES LATEST LINE-UP ADDITIONS
Additions include Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here Symphonic Live, Michael Monroe, Jackaman, Therapy, Jared James Nicols and more...

last great dreamers LAST GREAT DREAMERS TO PLAY UK SHOWS IN FEBRUARY
Last Great Dreamers jumped at the chance to take a break from writing their third album to get back on the road for a few dates...

motorhead DOWNLOAD TO RENAME 2016 MAIN STAGE AFTER LEMMY PLUS LOTS MORE MOTÖRHEAD NEWS
Where the band's name previously appeared on the billing, there is now a graphic of Lemmy's hat...

zakk wylde ZAKK WYLDE TO RELEASE 'BOOK OF SHADOWS II' ON APRIL 8 2016
Wylde's first solo release for 20 years will be followed by a wave of tour dates to be announced soon...

status quo STATUS QUO TO RELEASE ANOTHER TRIO OF DELUXE EDITION ALBUMS
These carefully curated special releases are to be issued by Universal Music on Friday 25th March...

hrh doom stoner HRH DOOM vs HRH STONER ANNOUNCE MORE BANDS
Angel Witch, Electric Citizen and Black Spiders head up another batch to be added for this October...

the defiled THE DEFILED ANNOUNCE RESCHEDULED UK HEADLINE TOUR FOR MAY
The Defiled will play as support to In This Moment, also in May...

rich robinson RICH ROBINSON RELEASES REISSUES AND NEW ALBUM
The four re-imagined albums include previously unreleased tracks and penned essays from Robinson himself...

crowbar CROWBAR ANNOUNCE EUROPEAN TOUR DATES
The run of twenty dates includes a UK appearance at Desertfest...

ben poole BEN POOLE CONFIRMS NEW ALBUM 'TIME HAS COME' AND UK TOUR
"I hope it'll please the blues-rock guitar fans, but also have the depth and maturity to appeal to an audience beyond that..."

desertfest DESERTFEST BERLIN 2016'S LINE-UP IS ALMOST COMPLETE
The first running order has been released, along with a limited number of day passes...

anneke van giersbergen DUTCH LEGEND ANNEKE VAN GIERSBERGEN BRINGS HER ACOUSTIC SHOW TO THE UK
Six solo dates in April have been arranged before Anneke returns to the studio...

hard rock hell HARD ROCK HELL X ANNOUNCE FIRST 15 BANDS
Ugly Kid Joe, Ratt, Glenn Hughes and Living Colour head the vanguard for this year's 10th anniversary...

space elevator SPACE ELEVATOR LAUNCH PLEDGE CAMPAIGN FOR SECOND ALBUM
There are a number of exclusive offers for Pledgers, including the chance to perform on the album...

valerian VALERIAN TO RELEASE 'STARDUST REVELATION' ALBUM
With a burgeoning Metal scene in Indonesia, the band have been working hard on their first full length album...

terry horbury vardis A MEMORIAL CONCERT AND BIRTHDAY PARTY FOR TERRY HORBURY OF VARDIS WILL TAKE PLACE ON 6TH FEBRUARY 2016
The unmissable event features a host of very special guests and all proceeds will go to Terry's chosen charity...

status quo STATUS QUO ANNOUNCE THE END OF ELECTRIC SHOWS
"There's more to come from us in the years ahead, but we won't tour the electric set ever again..."

toseland TOSELAND ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM 'CRADLE THE RAGE' & MARCH TOUR
Support for the ten date UK tour comes from Colour Of Noise...

bonfire BONFIRE CELEBRATE 30TH ANNIVERSARY WITH NEW DOUBLE ALBUM 'PEARLS'
The classics are being re-recorded in Italy, with completely new arrangements...

hostile HOSTILE ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM PRODUCED BY KK DOWNING PLUS EUROPEAN TOUR DATES
'The New World Disorder' is set for release via Gasworks Music and will be available on March 1st 2016...

rambliin man GINGER BAKER'S AIRFORCE 3, SEBASTIAN BACH AND THE CADILLAC THREE AMONG THE LATEST BATCH OF NAMES TO BE ANNOUNCED FOR RAMBLIN' MAN FAIR
Purson, Inglorious and The Zombies will also join the Kent festival this coming July...

the enid THE ENID RELEASE DUST ON 1ST APRIL
'Dust' is the final part of the stunning trilogy following 'Journey's End' and 'Invicta' and will be performed around the UK over the coming months...

sanguine EXCLUSIVE: SANGUINE PREMIERE VIDEO FOR 'SAVE ME' PRIOR TO RELEASE OF SECOND ALBUM 'BLACK SHEEP'
The sci-fi spectacular is directed by Tyson Wade Johnston and its premiere can be seen exclusively on MetalTalk right here...

steelhouse festival STEELHOUSE FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES MORE BANDS
Hey! Hello! featuring Ginger Wildheart, Blues Pills and Vega have been added to the line-up of this year's Steelhouse Festival in Hafod-y-Dafal in Wales...

jeff healey PROVOGUE RELEASE LOST JEFF HEALEY ALBUM TO COMMEMORATE HIS 50TH BIRTHDAY
These tracks were painstakingly restored and brought to life bringing into focus Jeff's unique and special gifts as an artist...

heretic order THE HERETIC ORDER UNLEASH VIDEO FOR 'THE DEATH RIDE BLUES'
The Heretic Order have announced a co-headlining UK tour in February with I.C.O.N...

mortiis MORTIIS ANNOUNCE UK HEADLINE TOUR
"It's about time we came back to the UK for some shows. See you in May, you bastards..."

zoax ZOAX ANNOUNCE SPECIAL ONE OFF LONDON SHOW
Catch Zoax in Camden on February 23rd where they will premiere some new songs...

antimatter ANTIMATTER ANNOUNCE RARE UK DATES
Antimatter will play two further dates on 'The Judas Tour' in Bristol and Manchester in March...

jimmy bain JIMMY BAIN PASSES AWAY AGED 68
Ex-Dio and Rainbow and current Last In Line bass player Jimmy Bain has sadly passed away aged 68...

rhapsody of fire RHAPSODY OF FIRE WILL COME TO INDONESIA FOR THE FIRST TIME
On the 'In To The Legend Asian Tour 2016', Rhapsody of Fire will stop in Jakarta on March 8th 2016...

steven tyler AEROSMITH'S STEVEN TYLER ANNOUNCES NEW SINGLE 'RED, WHITE & YOU'
Steven Tyler continues his foray into country music and reveals his latest track...

the treatment THE TREATMENT ANNOUNCE APRIL /MAY UK TOUR
The Amorettes will be special guests on all fourteen UK dates...

soto SOTO TO RELEASE SECOND ALBUM ON 1ST APRIL 2016
Soto will debut live during Feb 2016 with a string of East Coast US dates and a European debut in April with a short run through selected cities and countries...

temperance movement HEAR THE TEMPERANCE MOVEMENT LIVE AND ACOUSTIC AT DEEZER, PARIS
The band dropped into Deezer headquarters during a stop on their current tour promoting new album 'White Bear'...

jezabels CANCER TREATMENT FORCES THE JEZABELS TO CANCEL WORLD TOUR
"The band means so much to me, and cancelling the tour has been a very sad decision. I am hopeful that in the near future we will be back on the road again playing music we love..."

thunder THUNDER ANNOUNCE INTIMATE SHOW AT LONDON'S 100 CLUB
All ticket-sale profits will be going to Childline/NSPCC. Tickets for the special one-off show go on sale on 22nd January...

freddy lim HEAVY METAL STAR ELECTED TO PARLIAMENT IN HISTORIC VICTORY
Freddy Lim, the long-haired, tattooed front man of Taiwanese Black Metal band Chthonic wins a seat in parliament...

hrh doom stoner HRH ANNOUNCE NEW DOOM & STONER SHEFFIELD TRIP
Candlemass, Orange Goblin, Torche and Raging Speedhorn lead the vanguard for HRH's new event...

the mission THE MISSION ANNOUNCE 30TH ANNIVERSARY TOUR
The tour starts in Dublin on October 1st and includes O2 Shepherds Bush Empire in London on October 8th...

cop uk NEW ALBUM FROM C.O.P. UK 'NO PLACE FOR HEAVEN' IS OUT ON 29TH JANUARY
C.O.P. UK will immediately follow the release by hitting the road for a European tour with Helloween...

thin lizzy THIN LIZZY ANNOUNCE 2016 ANNIVERSARY SHOWS: MOTÖRHEAD DRUMMER MIKKEY DEE JOINS BAND
2016 is a year that includes a couple of important anniversaries in the history of Thin Lizzy...

joe bonamassa JOE BONAMASSA RELEASES NEW ALBUM 'BLUES OF DESPERATION' IN MARCH 2016
"You'll hear the proverbial trains, mountains, valleys and other blues references about heartbreak and loneliness, but there are also some poignant moments..."

cairo son CAIRO SON 'STORM CLOUDS' ALBUM LAUNCH SHOW CONFIRMED
The launch party will be held at Nambucca on March 18th...

stormbringer STORMBRINGER ADD NEW DATES TO FEBRUARY SHOWS SUPPORTING THEIR NEW ALBUM 'BLOOD AND RUST'
Check out the dates plus the videos for 'Bad Blood' and 'Rust' right here...

sanguine SANGUINE UNLEASH THEIR VEGAS SPECTACULAR WITH NEW VIDEO FOR 'PRETTY GIRL'
"The lyrics reflect my frustration that women are not meant to be both pretty and strong...but it's more of a 'fuck you' than a complaint..."

glenn frey GLENN FREY OF THE EAGLES PASSES AWAY AGED 67
Glenn Frey, the founder member and guitarist of The Eagles has sadly checked out...

dale griffin MOTT THE HOOPLE DRUMMER DALE GRIFFIN PASSES AWAY AGED 67
Dale "Buffin" Griffin was a founder member of Mott The Hoople and prolific session producer...

stiff little fingers STIFF LITTLE FINGERS ANNOUNCE UK TOUR DATES FOR FEBRUARY/MARCH 2016
Support will come from Ricky Warwick & The Fighting Hearts ...

inglorious INGLORIOUS CONFIRMED FOR SWEDEN'S STOCKHOLM ROCKS FESTIVAL 2016
Inglorious and Grand Magus are the first bands to be announced for 2016...

wishing well WISHING WELL FEATURING GRAHAM BONNET RELEASE 'HIPPIE HEART GYPSY SOUL'
"We wanted something extra to boost the album and when we wrote 'Hippie' we instantly realized that Graham would be a perfect vocalist for the song in many ways..."

sabaton SABATON REVEAL THE OFFICIAL LIVE VIDEO FOR 'RESIST AND BITE' TAKEN FROM FORTHCOMING LIVE RELEASE
"We recorded two shows in case one is not enough for you..."

babymetal BABYMETAL ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM TITLE
'Metal Resistance' is released worldwide on April 1st before their headline Wembley show the next day...

motorhead MOTÖRHEAD: THE TRAIN KEEPS A-ROLLIN'
We hope to see Phil and Mikkey back in full-time action as soon as possible, as well as Fast Eddie...

evil scarecrow EVIL SCARECROW RELEASE THEIR BRILLIANTLY BONKERS LYRIC VIDEO FOR 'END LEVEL BOSS'
The fan favourite will finally appear in the live show for the remaining shows of the 'Boldly Going Anywhere!' tour...

life of agony LIFE OF AGONY SIGN WORLDWIDE DEAL WITH NAPALM RECORDS
'A Place Where There's No More Pain' will be released later in 2016...

metal church METAL CHURCH ANNOUNCE TRACK LISTING AND COVER ARTWORK FOR NEW ALBUM 'XI'
The band's 11th studio release marks the return of legendary vocalist and front man Mike Howe...

twisted sister NEW EUROPEAN RELEASE DATE AND NEW COVER ARTWORK REVEALED FOR THE MOVIE 'WE ARE TWISTED F*CKING SISTER!'
The documentary is a mesmerizing and wickedly funny story of a 10 year odyssey to overnight success...

saxon SAXON TO RELEASE 9 ALBUM VINYL BOX SET
This spectacular package is a must have for Saxon fans and collectors and will be released in March...

wildfire festival WILDFIRE FESTIVAL 2016 ANNOUNCE DAY SPLITS
Saturday night headliners, running order and set times for Scotland's premier rock and Metal festival will be announced in February...

black stone cherry BLACK STONE CHERRY TO PLAY CHARITY GIG AT THE BORDERLINE ON JANUARY 24th
All proceeds of this special appearance will go to The Teenage Cancer Trust...

trivium TRIVIUM ANNOUNCE UK TOUR WITH SOME SURPRISING CHOICES OF VENUE
None of the regular main cities like London, Birmingham, Manchester or Glasgow are included on this jaunt...

yes YES TO TOUR UK AND EUROPE IN APRIL
The set will include 1971's 'Fragile' and 1980's 'Drama' in their entirety...

blind guardian BLIND GUARDIAN ANNOUNCE UK AND IRELAND TOUR IN MAY
Blind Guardian will be playing a spellbinding 150 minute long set every night – these shows are not to be missed...

fish farewell FISH ANNOUNCES APRIL HEADLINE TOUR DUE TO PHENOMENAL DEMAND
Another final chance to see 'Misplaced Childhood' in full following the recent sold out run and including the rescheduled European shows...

morgoth MORGOTH ANNOUNCE EUROPEAN TOUR WITH INCANTATION
Be sure not to miss this killer package of total Death Metal sovereignty...

iron maiden IRON MAIDEN TO TOUR CHINA FOR FIRST TIME IN THEIR CAREER
Iron Maiden will visit China in April 2016, once their set list has been submitted for approval from the Ministry Of Culture...

3 doors down 3 DOORS DOWN ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM 'US AND THE NIGHT' OUT MARCH 11th
"It's truly been a labour of love and we can't wait to get these songs out to our fans around the world..."

prong PRONG RELEASE NEW ALBUM ON FEBRUARY 5th
'X – No Absolutes' is packed with the band's trademark driving riffs and pinpoint-precise grooves...

skarlett riot SKARLETT RIOT HEAD OUT ON TOUR WITH DEVILSKIN
Skarlett Riot will be main support to Devilskin for six UK dates in February...

metal talk
© All written site content is copyright MetalTalk.net 2008-2015, unless otherwise stated, and is not to be used without prior permission.
Ads raid data recovery