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Titanic - Eagle Rock CD (album) cover




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3.78 | 29 ratings

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4 stars Being a Symphonic fanatic, my relation with Hard Rock (even if Prog Oriented) is a mixture of love and distrust, mostly because I'm not too fond to the extreme loudness, but the first time I listened "Eagle Rock" by the Norwegian band TITANIC, was only able to say WOW, while rising my jaw from the floor.

Their sound is a mixture of late 60's Psyche, based in frenetic but brilliant Hammond performance, Hard Rock with outstanding guitar solos and Progressive Rock with chorus a la URIAH HEEP, a structure close to DEEP PURPLE and very elaborate arrangements.

After their second release "Sea Wolf", the keyboardist Kenny Aas leaves the band and is replaced by "Helge Groslie" who obviously feels more comfortable with Progressive Rock and the Hammond than his predecessor, and incredibly has no problem taking the place of a capable musician and long term friend of the rest of the members.

"Eagle Rock" is opened by "One Night in Eagle Rock", the soft introduction doesn't prepare us for the superb expression of power that is coming, "Roy Robinson" with his correct vocals leads easily towards a Hammond section that introduces us in Psyche/Prog territory, while the rest of the band goes on with the strong Hard Rock so emblematic in the early 70's.

But that's not all, after several changes, some of the extremely dramatic, haunting chorus clearly reminiscent of URIAH HEEP, supported by the psychedelic Hammond and the powerful drumming of John Lorck, prove that this band is in an extreme high level. the guitar solo at the end by Janne Loseth closes brilliantly an already fantastic track with a touch of DEEP PURPLE.

At this point it's necessary to slow the revolutions and TITANIC takes care of this with "All Around You", a softer track that reminds of GRAND FUNK RAILROAD combined with LED ZEPPELIN, now the Groslie plays a much more fluid and less frenetic organ, more in the vein of early Prog with touches of "Tommy"

"One of Your Kind" starts soft again with Roy Robinson singing in a style that reminds me a bit of Robert Plant, bit after a short intro the bands hits us again with their heavy artillery, again Janne Loseth does a spectacular guitar solo that changes radically into a melodic passage and the song ends as it started,

"Heia Valenga" destroys any preconception we could have of the band, because it's a weird experimental interlude based in percussion and tribal shouts that works as an intro for "Dying Sun", another brilliant mixture of Hard Rock and Psychedelia with more changes, dissonant performances, haunting chorus, frenetic Hammond and tribal percussion somehow similar to OSIBISA, this song has everything you can ask for.

"And it's Music" calms the moods again, a power ballad with melodic piano but not without changes and some stronger sections, for the first time the band uses harmonica to enhance the Blues based sound, by this point nothing surprises me anymore.

"Richmond Express" is pure Rock in the vein of GRAND FUNK RAILROAD, and despite the excellent vocals I have to recommend special attention to the precise drums and radical changes, another great moment.

"Maureen" is a track that has everything, from a melodic opening to passages of lush keyboards and more dramatic changes, closer to Prog than the previous two tracks but still strong and vibrant prepares us for the grand finale that again breaks the structures entering to a Jazz territory (not Fusion, pure piano and bass based jazz), simply an unexpected and excellent closing for a great album.

My version has four more songs, the rhythmic "Rain 2000", dramatic "Blond", Latin oriented "Macumba" and the orchestral "Midnight Sadness", but as usual I only review the albums as they were originally released, this doesn't mean the bonus tracks are bad, by the contrary all are excellent, but the author created the album with only 9 songs, and that's what I review.

Now, I have to rate an album, and I'm very reluctant to give a perfect score to a Prog Related album, in this case I won't make an exception, even when "Eagle Rock" has the best of several different genres and that's a great achievement for a band in Norway back in 1973,

Four stars that should be 4.5 at least.

Ivan_Melgar_M | 4/5 |


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