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Nitrate - Open Wide Award winner

Open Wide
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 26 June 2019, 6:27 AM

Once a band has released its first album, a question arises: will it evolve using different elements in its musical work, will it keep in the same vein or can it evolve being true with what is already done? The answer is not trivial, and each band must answer it by them. And NITRATE, now a quintet, comes to their second round with “Open Wide”.

Some changes happened on the band’s line-up: Philip Lindstrand entered on the place of Joss Mennen on vocals, Marcus Thurston is the new lead guitarist, Rob Wylde is focused on the rhythm guitar and keyboards, Nick Hogg became the full time bass player (and plays some keyboards parts as well), and Pete Newdeck plays drums as before. Such changes affected their musical work a little, because their music evolved a lot, became more fluid and all things in their due places. It’s the same Glam/Hard Rock from the 80's with a great load of influences from AOR/Melodic Rock, but now it’s mature, and the melodies and choruses are better as well. And what great energy on the backing vocals!

The sound quality of “Open Wide” is really excellent. Rob Wylde made a great work on the production, having Pete Newdeck on the mixing and Harry Hess on the mastering, everything to balance the extreme melodic music of the band with a great level of sound clarity. But some silk roughness can be felt, exactly the dose that their music needs to be on the way it is.

“Open Wide” is an album that fans of bands as DEF LEPPARD, MÖTLEY CRÜE, BON JOVI and of other titans of the genre in the 80’s. But their musical work sounds alive during the entire album, but the savage catchy melodies of “You Want it, You Got It” (excellent guitars and chorus) and of “Night Time City” (it’s impossible to not sing along with the band, and the vocals are really excellent), the accessible feeling of “Only a Heartache Away” (great backing vocals, and the drums and bass guitars are keeping a strong and heavy rhythm), the nasty and aggressive Sleazy Rock song “Heart Go Wild”, the mix between 80’s influence and a modern insight on the melodies of “Heartbreak Suicide”, and the frantic Arena Rock insight of “Bad Girls” are the best songs. But the version that is being reviewed here has a bonus song on “Waiting On You”, another very good moment.

Evolving without losing their melodic identity, NITRATE creates a great album on “Open Wide”, so go, hear it and have a great time.

Originality: 7
Songwriting: 10
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. You Want it, You Got It
2. Night Time City
3. Only a Heartache Away
4. Heart Go Wild
5. I Don’t Want to Live
6. Never Surrender
7. Heartbreak Suicide
8. In the Night
9. Bad Girls
10. Shot in the Dark
11. Waiting On You
Philip Lindstrand - Vocals, Backing Vocals
Marcus Thurston - Lead Guitar
Rob Wylde - Rhythm Guitars, Keyboards, Backing Vocals
Nick Hogg - Bass Guitar, Keyboards
Pete Newdeck - Drums, Backing Vocals
Record Label: AOR Heaven


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