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Blue Öyster Cult - The Revölution By Night CD (album) cover


Blue Öyster Cult


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3.10 | 99 ratings

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Heavy Prog Team
4 stars Feel the (revolution) thunder

My understanding of this recording is surely quite far away from the one that many prog fans and hardcore BOC fans have generated. The truth is apart from the fact that the album is carried away in the AOR stream of the early 80's, there is nothing wrong with this effort; contrary, there are 9 solid compositions, beautifully sung, with some of the best riffs that BOC have ever created! Being realistic though, the disapproval by many BOC followers can be up to one extent justified - the ''commercial'' turn is evident, the melodies are AOR-based and there are no sharp metallic riffs of the past.

The sound has been replaced by ''polished'' compositions with strong keyboard backgrounds, solid rocking riffs and possibly the best vocal performance in BOC history. However, this new sound brings together a different, deep and dark (ish) atmosphere that compensates for the lost (?) glory of the past. How difficult is to explain to a prog fan that an almost pop song that starts off with a classic electronic beat (Shooting Shark) and its solo is based on a romantic saxophone can be as enchanting as a prog epic? Simplicity at its best. Most of the compositions are based on plain but well-worked ideas, proving the level of maturity the band has reached over the years.

The album kicks off with Take me away, a mid-tempo guitar based track with a keyboard-flourished, rhythmic, melodic and catchy refrain that makes a fantastic opener - a classic rocker with a typical solo break in the middle and return to the refrain to conclude. A piano introduction gives its place to a relaxing AOR tempo in Eyes on fire and a catchy (almost cheesy) refrain again that flows pleasantly with the next track that remains in the same vein, with the characteristic bass line and the charming soloing of saxophone.

The middle part of the album is highlighted by three powerful compositions: Veins is dominated by a relatively speedy tempo and an uplifting electric guitar riff accompanied by dynamic keyboards throughout the whole song. The guitar solo, possibly the best on the whole album, just adds to the quality. A gloomy, dark atmosphere is introduced in the Shadow of California, enhanced by the metallised vocals and multiple haunting voices in the refrain - the verse ''Into the darkness'' is repeated during the song over varying guitar riffs. An ''a la Scorpions'' riff kicks off in Feel the Thunder, turning the track into a BOC classic. The atmosphere remains, the vocals follow the ''recipe'' of the previous track, producing a majestic track in the vein of the classic BOC compositions.

Let go takes a completely different approach. An almost rock'n'roll track with a nearly ridiculous refrain... Possibly the least interesting track thus far; however it sounds as a pleasant change. The tempo has already picked up at this point and Dragon lady continues at a similar pace, with a rock'n'roll approach but in a far more melodic tone than its predecessor. Light years of love completely drops the pace to conclude the album. Although the vocal performance is at high standards, this last composition is probably the weakest - the lack of nerve in this track ruins the atmosphere despite the fact that the acoustic guitar adds some beauty.

Clearly a pleasant rocking album, REVOLUTION BY NIGHT although heavily influenced by AOR, still maintains the high standards of BOC songwriting... It just does it in a more melodic way...

Not recommended for hardcore prog fans; prog-related and classic rock fans might feel the thunder...

aapatsos | 4/5 |


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