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The Riven - Peace and Conflict Award winner

The Riven
Peace and Conflict
by "Metal Mark" Garcia at 16 November 2022, 2:15 PM

Back in the 80’s, especially on its first half, many bands were using a model of music that was simple the blend between Classic Rock with Hard Rock and Heavy Metal elements. This form of expression can work today, of course, none said the opposite, but things must be done in a personal way, to take all the clichés and release something that brings a feeling of something that has life, and not mold. And the Swedish quintet THE RIVEN seems to understand such lesson, as shown on “Peace and Conflict”. Their music is just that same, old and good formula of playing Classic Rock with the hooks of Hard Rock of the 70’s and the weight and energy of Heavy Metal, in a form of music that shows personality, groove and that organic feeling that’s bringing back by many acts, with a very good technical insight when it’s needed (as the bass guitar parts heard on “The Taker”).

The quintet’s music isn’t something different from the standard model of the genre, but’s played with honesty and energy, plenty of many melodic hooks that are hard to resist. It’s really very good to hear such album. The band worked with Ola Ersfjord on the studio, all to create the right sound quality for the album: clean and defined (no one is living in the 70’s here, mind you), but bearing the organic feeling of the past (due the instrumental tunes used on the recordings). It seems like being recorded as a rehearsal, something without endless digital corrections and editions.

Nine songs of a tasteful form of music are heard on the album, and as a set to begin with, one can hear to “On Time” (a hooking Classic Rock song that has resemblances with early age of IRON MAIDEN in some moments due the excellent guitar parts), “The Taker” (that shows accessible elements, but always with a powerful energy flowing from the speakers), “Peace and Conflict” (a very good song filled with contrasts between introspective noir moments with excellent crescendos near the chorus, with charming vocals), “Sorceress” (another heavy Classic Rock song filled with the melodic strength of Hard Rock, with a solid work of bass guitar and drums), “Fly Free” (the melodic lines of this one are filled with musical accessibility, and it’s a song easy to like and sing along on the second hearing), and the ‘sabbathic’ touch given on the heavier moments of “Death”. But dive into the album, and the more you hear to it, the more you’ll be addicted on the band’s music.

THE RIVEN is really a very good name on this specific trench of Rock ‘n’ Roll, so do yourself a favor and listen to “Peace and Conflict”.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. On Time
2. The Taker
3. Peace and Conflict
4. La Puerta del Tiempo
5. Sorceress
6. On Top of Evil
7. Fly Free
8. Sundown
9. Death
Totta Ekebergh - Vocals
Arnau Diaz - Guitars
Joakim Sandegård - Guitars
Max Ternebring - Bass
Jussi Kalla - Drums
Record Label: The Sign Records


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