REVOLUTION SAINTS – LIGHT BEFORE DARK
Release date: 13 October 2017
Label: Frontier Music SRL
- Light In The Dark
- Ride On
- I wouldn’t Change A Thing
- Don’t Surrender
- Take You Down
- The Storm Inside
- Can’t Run Away from Love
- Running on the Edge
- Another Chance
- Falling Apart
Upon welcome arrival for review of the second installment from Revolution Saints I must calm my enthusiasm and attempt to stem the tide of excitement. The words ‘now just relax and be objective’ march forth from my verbal stream of consciousness with ill-deserved confidence, but my inner lunatic is already frolicking with unbridled glee.
Unfortunately, or fortunately as the case may be, I gave the debut album another spin whilst awaiting my most fortunate opportunity to hear, mere days before Light In The Dark is unveiled upon the world. Being an avid fan of protagonists all, I will attempt some semblance of a balanced assessment of what lies within. That’s going to be a big ask following their debut release so I make no promises.
I ponder the beautiful cover art and reflect with an immediate yes… knowledge, wisdom and a wealth of experience. I make no claim that this is what the band sought to represent, but considering the individuals and their respective bodies of work, the image strikes me as most apt. None other than Jack Blades, Deen Castronovo and Doug Aldrich.
To provide a brief insight to those who may not be aware, Revolution Saints are quite literally a dream come true. To the delight of an appreciative and swelling hoard of international admirers, the dream of well know Frontier Records president Serafino Perugino is made manifest. As a man who started as a distributor, its little wonder his masterful auditory talents recognised a drummer with a voice of pure gold, a mild mannered and well-spoken gentleman who oozes classic rock from every pore and shreds like a particularly pissed demon possessed and…well…Jack Blades. Jack. The man who co wrote Shut Up And Dance, had produced and co-produced for Ozzy, Aerosmith, Cher, has played bass for Ringo Starr, played bass, sang backing vocals and coproduced Love Grenade with Ted Nugent, appears on Mötley Crüe’s Dr. Feelgood, and that’s not even close to one glimpsing the tip of the iceberg, but I think you get the general idea.
Revolution Saints also have a secret weapon in their quiver of masterful, musical talents and perhaps, the final piece that transforms a puzzle into a true work of art. That fifth element in this equation is producer and songwriter Alessandro Del Vecchio, who produced the debut album and the majority of LIGHT IN THE DARK was recorded at his studios in Somma Lombardo, Italy. Additional recordings took place at Blades’ studio in Washington and Doug Aldrich’s CasaDala studio in Los Angeles. Doug joined The Dead Daisies last year and has been thrilling audiences all over the world whilst on tour with TDD, so some of his contributions were also completed whilst on the road. Does it get any more rock and roll than that?
Now we could trudge forth whilst I write The Encyclopedia Revolutiona Sanctorum and continue to explore the seemingly endless musical contributions of the individuals involved, however that’s probably not quite what you’re here for.
As I consider how appropriate it would be to have these guys performing for us from the vinyl medium, I prepare to press the play button, well icon, and hope that the second will be every bit as good as the first. Then the introduction of the title track fills you with riff ridden excitement and as the song blast off, you are sent soaring in absolute celebration. Revolution Saints are back with determined and inspired purpose. The debut was a most enjoyable album, but from the very beginning of Light In The Dark, it is abundantly clear that a refinement has taken place. I believe the band have invested in their true rock heritage and explored the very skills that have made them each a staple of modern music. This is illustrated by their markedly heavier approach to this recording, but don’t that frighten you away. If you liked the debut album, you are going to be instantly in love with Light In The Dark. The melodies, the hooks, the vocal range, the timings, the sequence and the masterful dancing digits of Doug providing soaring solos. Its all right here.
The tribal drum beat and malevolent guitar introducing Freedom provides a distinct air of foreboding and this lurking, haunting element continues throughout. A tremendously powerful song but when finale brings a reading from Ezekiel 13:20, a whole new dimension comes to the bear. This element is left yours to do so as you will and make what you want. I will simply reflect with respect and say I get it Deen.
The first 20 seconds of Ride On and I’m busting to jump the Harley and, sans helmet do exactly as the band demand in the title. Given that this track is pacier than the former and more uplifting than Tornado Alley turbulence, I had best just enjoy from where I’m seated. Jump on the hog and this little number will have me wringing the throttles neck until the lads in blue bring an end to the fun and I have to play Freedom again.
I Wouldn’t Change A Thing is a ballad most mandatory on a Revolution Saints offering, but beautifully written and performed highlighting Deen’s vocal prowess. Four tracks in and we can make claim that there is truly something for everyone and the band members incredible wealth of experience becomes undeniably clear.
As you would appreciate from the title Don’t Surrender is ready for Rocky 478? or whichever movie about the downtrodden underdog achieving ultimate success is smart enough to grab this gem for the score. This track is quite remarkable in that it is exactly what you would reasonable expect from the title. An oddly satisfying feeling, but these gentlemen know exactly what they are doing.
Take You Down is an well-structured rock classic with Doug’s profound skills well represented, thereby providing a very catchy track with a rock edge…and drum hooks? Damn. That’s a first.
The Storm Inside is the perfect place to discontinue the track by track narrative and leave the remainder of the journey to the individual listener. Each subsequent track sequenced perfectly and to step between you and your band at this point with words prove a futile gesture. Listen and celebrate this superb collection, but please in sequence, if only even once. Each song is a tremendous celebration of these incredibly experienced and skilled craftsmen but the ultimate enjoyment is listening in sequence. Light In The Dark is a sensational representation of Serafino Perugino’s vision and what surely must be a vindication for him. For us, and absolute must for anyone who appreciates extremely fine rock music, performed and produced with passion to complete perfection.