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Lions Share

Emotional Coma

Review by Greg Olma

Lions Share have returned with a new CD after a 6 year break. It also marks the debut of Patrik Johansson on vocals and they have come up with a very good melodic heavy metal record.  I have been hearing good things about this album for a while and now the good folks at Locomotive Records have decided to get it a stateside release.  This is the first release by Lions Share that I have heard and it is exactly what I expected, good, catchy metal without a lot of frills.  Lars Chriss puts in a solid performance on guitar, never overplaying the tunes and Johanssen keeps things nice and melodic with a more traditional style of singing.  You might not be blown away by this album but it is definitely worth a purchase.

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
Cult Of Denial
The record starts off with a slow intro that kicks into a mid paced rocker with a NWOBHM feel to it.  The singing is very old school compared to what Europe is coming up with now.  Chriss adds a nice frenzied solo to his solid riffing in this opener.
The Arsonist
This cut fades in and quickly becomes a fast paded rocker with some Judas Priest elements in it.  There is a bit of new Euro metal in there also, but what really keeps the song going is the melodic vocals by Johansson.  The chorus is really catchy to the point of sticking in your head for hours after you hear the record.  I guess that is the sign of a good tune.
Emotional Coma
As you would expect, this title cut has an epic feel to it.  There is a plodding Sabbath guitar sound in parts and to give it even more af a Sabbath feel, Johansson sounds like a cross between Dio and a gruff Tony Martin.  Chriss adds a nice guitar solo on this one making it best of the bunch on Emotional Coma.
Clones Of Fate
Out of nowhere, this is a thrash tune with metal vocals.  It reminds me of something that might come off Judas Priest's Painkiller.  Again, the chorus is really catchy so it will be one that will stick in head for a while.
The Edge Of The Razor
The beginning has a Dokken riff but as soon as the song starts, it is Sabbath heaviness.  Johansson growls through some of the vocals here and I don't find it as good as his more smooth delivery.  Thankfully, during the chorus, he sticks to what he is good at and saves the tune.
Toxication Rave
Aside from the traditional metal vocals, this is an all out thrash tune. The band do it well and it adds a nice little diversity to the whole package.
Trafficking
Keeping (sort of) in the thrash mold, "Trafficking" has that but there is an underlying groove to it.  The vocals fit the song except the chorus where they go into a Euro power metal style.  Although there is nothing specifically wrong with this cut, it just doesn't have "it" and falls flat.
Bloodstained Soil
This tune goes back to the plodding Sabbath metal that we were getting before the little thrash diversion.  This could have easily come off a Dio era Black Sabbath album.  It is really heavy but keeps a nice melody throughout, making it one of the standout cuts.
Soultaker
A slow fade in starts off this fast rocker.  The chorus sounds a lot like "The Law Maker" off of Sabbath's Tyr record.  It's good, but I can't keep from getting the Sabbath tune in my head.
Hatred's My Fuel
The verses of this piece are very heavy but the chorus has a melodic Euro metal sound to it.  The two don't quite fit together.  I still find this to be one of the catchier tracks and because of the solid playing, it overcomes the blending of the styles.
Sorcerers
Chriss really shines on this, the last tune.  As the title clues us in, it is a very Dio-esque style of tune lyrically.  The overall effect is very epic and it is a great way to end a very solid album.
 
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