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Astral Doors - Jerusalem

Astral Doors
Jerusalem
by Mark Gromen at 05 December 2011, 8:23 PM

Once considered a hot property, like much of the real estate market, their value has taken a hit in recent years. Jerusalem is something of a thematically linked project, surrounding the problems Christianity has brought to the world: from long ago (title track) to the present (revved up “Operation Freedom”). However, ASTRAL DOORS couldn’t completely stay focused on the plot, opting for tracks like the autobiographical (for singer Nils Patrik Johansson, at least) “Child Of Rock N Roll”, as well as “With A Stranger’s Eye” and the historical (ultra-infectious) “Pearl Harbor”.

A greater emphasis was placed on returning to the rocking RAINBOW sound (my comparison, not theirs) of their first two platters. In that regard, they were completely successful. The high energy tracks, punctuated by Hammond organ, virtually segue one into the other. “Lost Crucifix” is a slower, more brooding number, while “Babylon Rise” travels a similar road to the Blackmore/Glover composed “Can’t Happen Here” off the RAINBOW disc of the same name (Joe Lynn Turner’s debut with the band).

Talk about throwbacks, the lyrics even mention “Evil Is Forever”, the title of these Swedes’ sophomore effort. “The Day Before Yesterday” begins acoustic, before morphing into a fist pumping anthem, Johansson’s usual high pitched voice in more restrained mode for at least a portion. The titular epic closes things out, referencing the town as a crossroads (and therefore the tinderbox flashpoint for conflicts) for three major religious orders: Christianity, Judaism and Islam. Welcome back, ASTRAL DOORS.

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Seventh Crusade
2. With A Stranger's Eye
3. Child Of Rock 'n' Roll
4. Pearl Harbor
5. Lost Crucifix
6. Babylon Rise
7. Suicide Rime
8. The Battle Of Jacob's Ford
9. Operation Freedom
10. The Day After Yesterday
11. Jerusalem
Lineup:
Ulf Hagerstroem– Bass
Johan Lindstedt– Drums
Nils Patrik Johansson– Vocals
Joakim Roberg– Guitar
Joachim Nordlund- Guitar
Record Label: Metalville Records
     


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