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Lioncage - 'The Second Strike' Hot

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Written by Central Electronic Brain     May 31, 2017    
 
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This is a band and album that could do with a producer and the album mixed and mastered properly.

Lioncage hail from Germany and comprise of three journeymen musicians from the tribute scene, unfortunately this shows on parts of this record and on the first, second and third listens I struggled with this album. The label blurb says for fans of Survivor, Toto, Journey, Foreigner etc., well this album doesn't come close to any of those.

The mix is a struggle for me, a guitar straight down the middle of every song gives the tracks no separation, something that's very disconcerting. The whole thing sounds like a demo, a demo with a really nice guitar solo sound and a bunch of good bass players.

'Mysterious Angel' kicks things off in a mediocre fashion, whereas 'Lights' takes this album up several levels and is a good song. 'Sunrise' struggles in parts but has its moments, but not many. 'The Other Side Of The Moon' is again another particularly Marmite-like offering, I like the music on it but the vocal melody is at odds with it. 'When Dragons Fall' is the "epic" track which regretfully doesn't sound epic.

Then 'Journeyman' comes along and you wonder why this track hasn't been used as the template for the whole album; this has everything that's been missing so far. It still has a slight amateur feeling but things are looking up. 'Let It In' is another great song with intelligent changes.

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'Secrets' is the shock of the album, not only is it a really great song but it boasts a brass section, a monstrous bass player and Tim Pierce (Bruce Springsteen, Michael Jackson, Rascal Flatts, Joe Cocker, Rick Springfield, Elton John etc.) ripping the song an outro solo like a beast. This song is West Coast... so West Coast its feet are wet.

'The Inner Circle' tries to keep things going but to be fair it's got a struggle, this is a good song and one that would benefit from a massive chorus which is so close to being there, but isn't. 'Colors' and 'Save The Day' finish off the album, both try their best but they are very generic.

Thorsten Bertermann (vocals), Torsten Landsberger (drums) and Lars K├Ânig (guitars) are aided by some very good bass players and a bevy of backing singers all of which are sadly lost in the mix. This is a band and album that could do with a producer and the album mixed and mastered properly.

Tony Marshall

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