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Arena - Immortal? CD (album) cover





3.94 | 483 ratings

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kev rowland
Special Collaborator
Honorary Reviewer
4 stars Another album, another line-up change, but let's hope that this time there can be a long term continuity in Arena's ranks as personally I believe this to be their best album to date. Joining Clive Nolan (keys/vocals), Mick Pointer (drums) and John Mitchell (guitars/vocals) are Rob Sowden (vocals) and Ian Salmon (bass). Ian is already known to those who follow Clive's projects, as he has been in Shadowland since their inception.

Each of the songs works extremely well, although they encompass a myriad of styles. Opener "Chosen" is very much an anthemic rock song, with power chords and soaring keyboards set against delicate vocals. It is one of the rockiest numbers ever undertaken by Arena, almost like a cross between Shadowland and Threshold. Contrast that to the following "Waiting For The Flood", which is all about acoustic guitars and a ballad style which is much more reflective in manner. Ian also uses fretless bass on this, which gives a warmer sound.

I found it very hard to pick a favourite on the album, as they are all so good. While sometimes looking backwards, there is a great impression of moving forward and looking outside of the normal progressive genre for ideas. Talking to Clive yesterday, he was telling me that this has had the most pre-orders of any of their albums and to my ears that is richly deserved. If you are a fan of Arena then this the album you have been waiting for, and if you have yet to discover the delights of the Clive/Mick partnership then now could not be a better time.

Feedback #58, May 2000

kev rowland | 4/5 |


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