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Jorn

The Gathering

Review by Greg Olma

This may be the 6th release by Jorn Lande (under the Jorn name of course) but this is the first one I have really listened to closely. His other albums have always been caught in passing and now I am a bit disappointed in myself for not taking the time to really give them a chance.  This is the kind of music that is right up my alley as far as metal goes.  I read that this is really a collection of some older songs re-recorded and a few new ones thrown in but this is really the first time I am hearing them so it is all new to me.

Now, I will admit, none of this is necessarily new or groundbreaking but that really isn't the point.  The tunes are performed in just a pure manner without trends rearing their ugly heads to muck things up.  If you like David Coverdale and his style of bluesy rock 'n metal, then this collection of songs is for you.  And quite a collection it is too.  You get 16 tunes that span 77 minutes so you really get value for money.  Based on this release, I will be visiting his past and "really" checking out the older stuff.  If you haven't already, I suggest you do the same.  You won't be sorry.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2008  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Something Real
The record starts off in a great Whitesnake way.  Everything about it screams "Coverdale," which is not a bad thing.  Lande also possesses that warm bluesy type of voice.  Even the lyrics have some of Coverdale's style with lines like "bless me with holy water." This is a great way to open the proceedings.
Gonna Find The Sun
Wow, the opening guitar riff is almost a complete rip off of "Stand Up And Shout" by Dio.  After that brief intro, the cut swerves into a fast paced rocker that has a bit of Whitesnake in it.  Like I said earlier, none of this is groundbreaking, but it is played extreemly well and it is really catchy.
Bridges Will Burn
A droning riff starts off this tune that plods along nicely.  It is hard to choose songs that are stand-outs on this CD and I doubt this would be one of mine but it is still a great tune.  There is a nice melodic guitar solo in the middle that proves you don't have to play 1000 notes per second to show your talent.
Young Forever
This is the most current sounding of the tracks so far.  There is an urgency to the performance that would make this a great live set closer.  Even the vocals are more modern with less of a Coverdale style to them.  I'm guessing at this (promo CDs don't always come with liner notes or info) but based on the sound and style, this seems to be one of the newer tunes recorded for this album.
Tungur Knivur
There is an epic feel to this tune that, although it has some Whitesnake influences, has a bit of Dio thrown in.  It is as if they mixed the two together, lyrics and all, and finished off with a little bit of newer metal on top.  The only part that confuses me is the short drum solo thing in the middle.  It doesn't quite fit the tune but otherwise, as far as epic tracks go, this is one of the better ones.

One Day We Will Put Out The Sun
For a song that isn't very long, Jorn are able to fit a few different parts into this cut to keep it interesting.  There is a part that almost has a party rock texture (chorus) and the verses have a metal sound hat works nicely with the blues part in the middle.

Sunset Station
This is a total blues metal track that Whitesnake perfected on their 1987 album.  They add a nice change for the chorus that is more current Euro metal sounding.  Even the vocals and style after the guitar solo are very 'Snake-ish.  I would have to rate this one as one of the top songs on the record.
Hourglass
After such a cool song as "Sunset Station" they follow it up with my favorite on The Gathering.  I bet Coverdale wishes he wrote this one because it is the type of classy epic (and almost ballad) track that would fit nicely on his records instead of some of his other (cringe-worthy) hits.  Lande sounds amazing on this cut and the whole band does a phenomenal job of not over playing anything.  I would buy this record based on this tune alone.
Gate Of Tears
When you get something like "Hourglass" everything that follows will just not hit the mark.  Although this song is good, there is nothing exceptional about it.  The playing is top notch for sure but the only word that I could use to describe it would be "ordinary."
House Of Cards
Now this is more like it.  Even though it is a ballad, it relies more on a blues sound than an 80's power ballad type of motif.  There is a nice bridge in the middle that breaks it up a bit.  If all ballads were written (and performed) like this, I don't think they would get the bad wrap they have gotten through the years.
My Own Way
This cut sounds the most unique when compared to the other tracks before it.  Its kind of the odd man out but it is refreshing to get something s little different.  There are times when Lande sings in a Joe Lynn Turner style.  This is the type of track that could have come off of the last couple of Turner records.
Worldchanger
The beginning has a prog metal sound to it but as the song progresses, it is more of the same as the rest of the record (which is by no means a bad thing).  The band seem to be streching out a bit and working in some time changes into the mix.  "Worldchanger" is one of those album tracks that could never be a hit but makes a nice deep cut when played live.
Abyss Of Evil
Some heavy riffing starts off this tune but then it slides into a Whitesnake-ish tune.  There's not much going on other than that.  Of all the songs on offer here, this is my least favorite.
Where The Wind Blows
Using Coverdale for a blueprint again, this track builds into a really nice rocker.  The lyrics are a bit cliche but a good song is a good song and this is one of them.  It is nice to see that the quality of the music doesn't trail off at the end of the disc.
Christine
Working with Yngwie Malmsteen and Joe Lynn Turner must have rubbed off a bit because this is very much a Malmsteen sounding tune (during his more commercial days) with Turner's lyrics.  Again, it does not fit the whole style of the record but it is still a good song.
Big
Here is another unique sounding cut that has more of a party rock feel.  The song is catchy but overall, it is just average.  It definitely won't be a tune that I would play often since there are so many other great pieces to choose from on this record.
 
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