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Enbound - 'And She Says Gold' http://ns2.rocktopiarecords.com/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/cb/23/15/1157_enboundandshesaysgold_1301596103.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     March 31, 2011    
 
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Whether you like metal or hard rock, let yourself get Enbound.

Enbound are another creation from the metal making machine that is Sweden at present. The band’s origins date all the way back to 2006 and is the brain child of Mike Cameron Force (drums), former member of Zonata. Sven ‘Swede’ Oden (bass) was also on board from the early days. Their first release was a four track demo in Feb 2008; three tracks from this demo remain with their full debut. Due to personal reasons guitarist Jonathan Nyberg was forced to leave the band in late 2008. He was replaced by Marvin Flowberg (guitars), a Swedish teenage guitar prodigy. Then as the band went into the studio in 2009 to record their debut, original singer Marcus Nygren decided to take a different musical route and left. Lars ‘Lee Hunter’ Safsund (vocals) was bought on board and the line up was complete again. From 2009 to today, the band has worked passionately on their first full record. On 29th April 2011, Enbound release their debut album ‘And She Says Gold’  on Inner Wound Recordings.

It is tough to know where to start, there are so many different styles and sounds on this album. Enbound's opening shot is ‘Combine The Souls’, a blisteringly loud, unapologetic beast of a track. A heavenly choir gives way to soaring keys and a high pitched wail before unleashing a stunning full force riff. The chorus is big and harmonic and is instantly memorable and not a bad example of what the rest of ‘And She Says Gold’ has to offer. But this is just the start. From the most amazingly soft and romantic ballad of ‘The Broken Heart’ to the Megadeth style thrash of ‘Shifting Gears’, various forms and genres of metal are on display here. There are also several tracks that fit firmly in the melodic hard rock sound. This includes the very Gary Hughes/Ten sounding ‘Under A Spell’, complete with harmonic vocal opening and bombastic chorus. Each track has many different influences, sounds and pace to give a wonderful variety to absorb. The other major ballad ‘Frozen To Be’ sees a delicious duet between Safsund and female singer Lagaylia Frazier. To bring this release to a close, the band even takes a few minutes to show their fun side as they cover Michael Jackson’s ‘Beat It’ very much in the style of Alien Ant Farm’s previous MJ cover. It gives Swedish axe man Flowberg an opportunity to really let loose with the Eddie Van Halen solo and fret work and is a great vehicle for the kid to show off what he can do. This is not the best cover of this track ever done, but it is one of the more fun and vibrant.

This is an exceptionally good, if not bordering excellent debut from Enbound. This release has been years in the making and it shows. What is most surprising is the sheer number of different genres of rock and metal that influence this release. There is plenty of melodic hard rock, a bit of progressive, some symphonic, a splash of thrash but to name just a few. The various different sounds blend not only between different tracks, but also within them individually. One moment you have a thrash metal riff screaming away, suddenly it’s gone and replaced by a melodic harmonic chorus just in one song. If each style of metal was a fruit, this album would be the biggest fruit salad you could imagine. To describe it on paper most people will say that it could not possibly work and they would normally be right. The majority of time when so many influences are played together it turns into a bit of a mess. In luck terms it’s like throwing a jigsaw up in the air and hoping all the pieces land face side up and in place. You would never expect it to work but somehow Enbound have managed to do just that.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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The band stated they wanted to take their time and release the perfect debut. Perfection in music is all but unachievable - somebody somewhere will always dislike something or some part. You simply cannot please all the people all the time. Those that love the ballads and more melodic tracks may find the Megadeth styled thrash riffs a bit too oppressive and heavy. The power chord lovers may find the ballads a bit flat. But overall there is such a display of styles on offer here that many people should find chunks they can enjoy. Pleasing most of the people most of the time is probably about as close to perfection in a debut as you can get. This album is not only musically good, but the production is spot on. The album was mastered by Bjorn Engelmann who has worked on the likes of Rammstein and Primal Fear, and he allows every member of the band to shine and adds a crisp professional finish.

Safsund may not have the biggest vocal range ever, but certainly can go high and low enough to wonderfully suit each of these tracks. He can always be clearly heard despite the wall of sound around him. The rhythm section of drum and bass pound along but never seem to take over. But the band really lucked out with young guitarist Flowberg; this kid really can play and gives a wonderful musical display on the six string of different genres. The small knock against him is that there is clearly more than one guitar layer playing on several tracks and it will be interesting to see how they work around that in a live performance. If there is a negative on the album as a whole, it could be its length. At a long 59 minutes and 14 tracks there is value for sure. But there are several songs in the melodic hard rock vein; you could maybe have lost one or two of those styled tracks to trim it down without losing anything off the album. But then what’s wrong with more of a good thing? Overall, an exciting, boisterous, enjoyable debut album. It is too early to start talking of award winners, but don’t be shocked to see these guys listed in debut of the year categories as 2011 closes. The interesting task for these guys will be how to improve on this for their next release. Whether you like metal or hard rock, let yourself get Enbound - you will heartily enjoy the experience.

Dave Scott

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