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The Savage Rose - Tameless CD (album) cover


The Savage Rose


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2.00 | 1 ratings

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2 stars Such a pity that myriads of artists in the ProgArchives database never get reviewed, but I certainly hoped some other reviewers besides me for this long-lived, legendary Danish band, at least for their classic and more progressive era from the late sixties to the early 70's. After the 1973 albums Babylon and Wild Child, the band took a break and returned with Solen Var Også Din (1978), followed by another album in 1982. Since then, new Savage Rose albums have been released in a steady pace up to 2017. In practise it's been a project of vocalist Annisette and her husband, keyboardist and composer Thomas Koppel. Most of the tracks here feature Whitney Houston's guitarist Ray Fuller, but otherwise Thomas Koppel is almost sovereignly responsible of all playing, save some bass and drums/ drum programming.

I haven't much listened to Savage Rose's later era -- even the classic era only vaguely --, so I can't evaluate this album against other ones. Probably needless to say this music is not progressive rock at all. Most of all this is a vocalist's album, call it vocal oriented popular music or entertainment music, and I think that's the best area to look for overall musical references: female (post-80's) vocalists such as LARA FABIAN, PATRICIA KAAS, etc, with a synthetic production, in this case approaching modern r&b. In other words, accessible, emotionally oriented, programmed music to back up the distinctive vocalist. But at least Annisette is still a good singer, although not as unique as in the early days.

'Vanished' reminds me of BJÖRK in the early nineties (e.g. 'Come to Me', 'Venus As a Boy'). Impressive vocals and a deep atmosphere with a hypnotic rhythm and some cool organ and accordion. 'Planet of Paradise' is a very sensitive and soulful pop ballad but it avoids being syrupy. I'd like to compare it to some emotional STING songs such as 'Shape of My Heart', with a bit more of an r&b flavour in the sound. Smooth soul and r&b tendencies continue throughout the album, often underlined by breathy backing vocals or a gospel-like choir. Sadly the song material gets weaker midway. For example 'Meet Me There' and 'Beautiful Day' are terribly unoriginal, r&b-oriented pop songs. 'Shining' is slightly better as a sensitive ballad.

The album ends with its only cover tune, 'Smile'. Dozens of artists have recorded this Charles Chaplin evergreen, and Savage Rose's dreamy version is fairly pleasant, if a bit forgettable. This album starts much more promisingly than it continues, and at some point the music becomes rather boring really. Therefor two stars is enough.

Matti | 2/5 |


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