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Jorn - Heavy Rock Radio II – Executing The Classics Award winner

Heavy Rock Radio II – Executing The Classics
by Rachel Montgomery at 16 March 2020, 10:44 PM

JORN is a metal act dedicated to covering rock and metal classics. He takes a song, “Jorn-izes” it, and voilà! -  Out comes energetic, upbeat, rocking versions of well-known metal hits, B-sides, light tracks, and rock standards. Overall, the musicality and production for each of these numbers is spot-on, and if you’re looking for a novelty metal album to listen to, I highly recommend this one and his others.

Jorn-izing songs works best for “standards” – versatile songs with a simple structure that can easily be adapted by other bands. Some good examples on the album are “Needles and Pins” and “Quinn The Eskimo”. Both began as 1960s bops by THE SEARCHERS and BOB DYLAN and were later covered by THE RAMONES and MANFRED MANN and THE GREATFUL DEAD respectively. In both cases, the songs began as mellower, hippy-trippy songs that could be turned metal with ease. “Needles And Pins” gets a biting edge that I’m surprised surpasses THE RAMONES’ version. As far as “Quinn The Eskimo”, it’s a novelty tune that Dylan wrote in the late 1960s. It was supposed to be a quirky folk-song anthem. When JORN gets his hands on it, it becomes a bouncy, energetic piece with rocking vibes that keep it moving.

However, while it works wonders for standard songs, there're some numbers I wish he did a little differently. I thought that “New York Minute”, originally a DON HENLEY number, lost a lot of its more significant, thematic elements. The original song opens like a cabaret lounge act and captures the grit and tension of a New York lifestyle with jazz club elements and city ambiance. As someone who’s lived within driving distance of New York City for a decade, I thought this version was too sanitized. It sounded more like a Broadway show number; while it’s more intense, it’s cleaner, so I don’t hear the complexity that made Henley’s version so profound in the first place. It’s still a well-produced, musically tight version, I just think it should have found a way to keep the feeling of the song.

However, the first track and single, “Lonely Nights”, got my attention right away and I can’t stop listening to it, it’s that good! I thought it was a Hair Metal cover; the upbeat, 80s style was there, accompanied by the energy and the excitement. Like most of the songs JORN covers, it’s a simpler one, easily adapted to the intensity that is Melodic Metal. The gravelly vocal stylings give it more of an edge, along with the zinging guitars and tight, pounding drums. The sweeps in the solo are intricate and well-executed, providing a nice contrast for the softer refrain. I never thought I’d see the day when I’d be rocking out to a metal cover of a BRYAN ADAMS song, but here we are.

Overall, I’m sold. I want to check out more of JORN, and if you need something to lift your spirit during these crazy times, try putting a little JORN in your life. The faster, bouncier songs are great, much-needed pick-me-ups for when you’re bored or feeling down, so crank some!

Songwriting: 9
Production: 10
Musicianship: 10
Memorability: 10

5 Star Rating

1. Lonely Nights
2. Winning
3. New York Minute
4. Needles And Pins
5. Love
6. I Do Believe In You
7. Nightlife
8. Bad Attitude
9. Quinn The Eskimo (The Mighty Quinn)
10. Mystery
11. The Rhythm Of The Heat
Jørn Lande – Vocals
Jgor Gianola – Guitars
Trond Holter – Guitars
Tore Moren – Guitars
Luca Princiotta – Guitars
Andrea Seveso – Guitars
Sid Ringsby – Bass
Alessandro Del Vecchio – Keyboards
Francesco Jovino – Drums
Record Label: Frontiers Music srl


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