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Persian Risk - 'Who Am I?' http://mail.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/54/9a/33/Persian-Risk-Who-Am-I-49-1430419810.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     April 30, 2015    
 
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If you like very fine vocals and some stonking songs this will hit your sweet spot.

NWOBHM was a little like the start of the London Marathon, hundreds of bands started but as time progressed some like Iron Maiden started to reveal themselves as champions, some started well but peaked early and dropped out, others settled for the long haul and some were fun runners, but there was the odd one that clearly had the stamina yet inexplicably just didn't cross the finishing line. Persian Risk was one such band; the auspices were good and despite early line-up changes things settled with the classic line-up of Carl Sentance, Graham Bath, Nick Hughes, Phil Vokins and Steve Hopgood. There was the much lauded album 'Rise Up', TV appearances and tours but incredibly it didn't quite break for them; incredibly because Sentance was and still is one of the best Rock vocalists on the circuit. In 2012 he revived PR, released 'Once A King' and now in 2015 follows it up with 'Who Am I'.

Opening with a juicy twin guitar solo, 'Don't Look Back' goes back to their NWOBHM roots, frenetic guitars and rhythm with Sentance's signature screaming vocal stamped over the top. The title track continues in the same high octane vein. 'My Creation' brings a change of pace, a little more Symphonic and epic aided by guest Don Airey on keys, before 'In My Life' brings another change in style, the vocal is more controlled and contained, the riffs and solos power the song through its journey to fade out. 'The Writing On The Wall' is in a Maiden-esque font, Sentance is often likened to Bruce Dickinson which I don't hold with; he has some pretty slick moves of his own, thank you very much. Take a deep breath for 'I Feel Free' because you're going to need it, don't try head-banging either, you'll dislocate something.

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'Dark Tower' and 'Calling For You' tie to the beginning in the form of founder member Phil Campbell, the superior production sounds fatter and slicker, but I confess I prefer the edginess of the originals. Stepping slightly out of the box is 'Facing Your Demons', interesting vocal lines and some slightly Proggy guitar gives this a twist. Closing track 'I Thought It Was You' is completely out of left field, nominally the ballad, this smoochy, Jazz-influenced song is the cuckoo in the nest but I'll say this, if some of the big earning Neo-crooners get to hear it, they may choke on their hooch.

Will 'Who Am I' be their legendary album? No it won't, 'Rise...' was probably that album, but if you like very fine vocals and some stonking songs this will hit your sweet spot.

Helen Bradley Owers

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