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Royal Hunt: Show Me How To Live

Royal Hunt, the veteran hard rock band from Denmark whose music is self-described as being "melodic with a progressive and symphonic flair," recently released their 11th studio album Show Me How To Live. Perhaps I am missing something here, or it's just my not being acclimated to the music scene in Denmark, but this has to be one of the worst efforts I've ever heard. Sitting here in my reviewers chair, where I was initially excited and optimistic about the prospect of hearing something new and progressive, which was largely due to my liking of the cover art - a knight, fully clad in armor, preparing to do battle while a town burns behind him, I soon was left feeling disappointed, and frankly sick with the repetitive nature of this album. It's almost as if Royal Hunt got sidetracked and ended up in some sphere where the only music that passed as hard rock was the type of stuff that you'd hear on a Medieval Times commercial. Ya know what I mean?

All in all, D.C. Cooper's lead vocals are tired, dated, and altogether irritating, and I think you'd be hard-pressed to find someone who disagrees with this sentiment. This, combined with a boring arrangement of guitar licks and unnecessary keyboards, makes for an overwhelmingly stodgy listening experience. The only positive, and believe me I searched far and wide for even the most microscopic hint of goodness in this album, is that, production-wise, Show Me How To Live is far superior to its predecessors.

Save your money and please show me how to make it stop.

Track Listing
1. One More Day
2. Another Man Down
3. An Empty Shell
4. Hard Rain's Coming
5. Half Past Loneliness
6. Show Me How To Live
7. Angel's Gone

Added: December 11th 2011
Reviewer: Wesley Smith
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 2361
Language: english

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» SoT Staff Roundtable Reviews:

Royal Hunt: Show Me How To Live
Posted by Simon Bray, SoT Staff Writer on 2011-12-11 09:25:17
My Score:

Royal Hunt have been making progressive, yet highly melodic rock for the best part of two decades now. Much of their work has been of the highest quality although I have to confess the last Royal Hunt album I fully enjoyed was 2006 Live which featured John West on vocals whilst X from last year with Marks Boals up front barely registered. However, Show Me How to Live with a line up of André Andersen – keyboards, D.C. Cooper – vocals, Allan Sřrensen – drums, Andreas Passmark – bass and Jonas Larsen – guitars sees the band right back in the forefront of the current music scene.

Obviously it is the return of D.C. Cooper which whets the appetite and he is as reliable as ever but there's never been any doubt that Royal Hunt is and always has been André Andersen's baby and he's all over this record like a rash. Every song is underpinned by lush, sometimes atmospheric keyboards in what can only be described as classic Royal Hunt. The return of Cooper appears to have given Andersen the impetus to write the type of memorable choruses for which he is justifiably known for. I would back this statement up with an example but all the songs on Show Me How to Live are strong. It's as if Cooper's reinstatement has upped everybody's game. The production is as good as it ever gets on Frontiers Records, the performances of the band seem much more focussed than on recent Royal Hunt efforts and there's little doubt that this is an excellent record which deserves wide recognition.

In fact, my major (only) gripe with this album is that there are only seven songs – I could have easily managed another couple – it's that good.

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