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Pain Of Salvation - Remedy Lane CD (album) cover

REMEDY LANE

Pain Of Salvation

 

Progressive Metal

4.21 | 832 ratings

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hdfisch
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Unlike for their other releases the concept behind their fourth album "Remedy Lane" is not based on an abstract topic like maturing, death, religion or environment but can be rather considered a highly intimate disclosure of Daniel's very own personal problems. The 13 tracks on here are introducing us in at times frightening outright words to emotional and sad episodes from his own life like very early sexual experiences, a broken relationship, a stillbirth by his wife and a suicide by a mother of two children (his own mother?). The change in their style with inclusion of some more mellow and acoustic songs which started with their previous one "TPE P.1" has been consequentially continued here though "Remedy Lane" might need a couple of spins more to grow more on you but I must say I even prefer this album to its predecessor. Because, in fact apart from "Second Love" (being written by Daniel already around 1987) which is actually just a plain pop ballad there's not any real weak track to be found on here and moreover we get a bunch of highlights like "Fandango", "A Trace Of Blood", "Undertow", "Rope Ends", "Chain Sling" and "Beyond The Pale" to name just the strongest ones.

I mentioned already that this album might not hit you right from the beginning, not like "TPE Pt.1" with highly memorable tracks as "Used" and "Ashes" but in opposite to this one "Remedy Lane" passes much better the "test of time" becoming better and better with every repeated spin. I'd like to express it like this that the previous one with its more abstract and general topic was a rather extraverted one whereas this one here is more its introverted, highly personal and emotional counterpart. As usually with PoS a closer look at the lyrics might help to dig the true beauty of this work. After the rather bombastic short opener "Of Two Beginnings" chapter one of the story starts in a more dreamy atmosphere with "Ending Theme". Daniel included here once again some rap type of vocals but this song sounds much different from "Used" without any resemblance to FNM transcending lots of emotions. "Fandango" is a great one as well with its slightly strange staccato rhythm and especially due to the extreme alternations of Daniel's voice from very dark and mystical to high-pitched yelling sounding highly interesting and versatile. "A Trace of Blood" in particular is very worthwhile to be listened to concentrating more on the lyrics which are very sad and telling about the tragedy of a stillbirth. Both the lyrics and the music are transcending very well this kind of sorrowful and powerless feeling. Then there's "This Heart of mine (I pledge)" which closes the first chapter and though this one was never one of my favs right from the beginning, I've to say this love song has its great moments especially when it's getting more upbeat but still I would say not to be considered a highlight of this album.

Second chapter opens with the frowning, sentimental more ballad-esque "Undertow" which once again mainly lives from Daniel's great expressive voice and builds up an enormous tension during its running time. This one's followed by the next highlight "Rope Ends" being more upbeat with a nice catchy chorus but as well some nice versatile solo sections. Like with "A Trace of Blood" the story been told here is again an extremely touching one about a mother who decided to commit suicide. Next one "Chain Sling" is one of my favs on here, a driving and quirky one with a very nice Celtic flair. The highly appealing classically inspired acoustic ballad "Dryad of the Woods" is closing the second chapter which is (for me) the strongest one of this disc without any single weak track. BTW there are nicely fitting lyrics for this one to be read in the booklet.

Third chapter is opened by the title track having a highly synth-dominated sound and taking up again the main themes "Ending Theme" and "Rope Ends". This one doesn't sound that much convincing to me and probably plays rather a role of an interlude. Next two tracks "Waking every God" and "Second Love" I'd consider less essential as well. The former one is more a kind of melodic straight forward hard rock song and the latter one a nice love ballad (which wouldn't be out of place on a Bonjovi album though). Fortunately and finally this chapter still has a great highlight to offer with the longest track on here "Beyond the Pale" developing into a versatile powerful and also atmospheric piece of music.

As a summary I can say that "Remedy Lane" though having a few weak tracks (as did have "TPE Pt.1" as well) has to be considered (once again) an excellent record by PoS. I would say it's their most touching one and actually I find it a pity that the concept is mistaken by many people with an ordinary teenager's problem of a lost love. I'd like to tell all those people that there's definitely more behind this album and that it's really rewarding to give it a closer look and listen. At least to me it could offer me much more in the long run than "TPE Pt.1" did but that's just my very personal impression being aware that most people prefer that one.

hdfisch | 4/5 |

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