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Eden's Curse: Cardinal

You have to tip your hat to the multi-national collective that make up Eden's Curse, almost constant line-up reshuffles barely ruffling the feathers of this muscular melodic rock outfit. New additions arrive this time in the shape of keyboard player Chrism (or as mummy Pulkinnen calls him, Christian) and drummer John Clelland, the latter having been with the band for a couple of years now and already having appeared on the live album Live With The Curse. Returning for his second studio album with the band is vocalist Nikola Mijic, the able replacement for the (at the time) seemingly irreplaceable Michael Eden simply going from strength to strength. However the beating heart of this band is bassist and song writer Paul Logue, while guitarist Thorsten Köhne is the fire in its belly; the pair the only surviving members from when Eden's Curse formed back in 2006.

With that constant evolution, Eden's Curse have managed to somehow carve out an instantly recognisable niche for themselves, each album growing and broadening the band's approach while still staying firm and true to what they've always stood for – catchy, but full on melodic hard rock that verges on metal when the need arises. Cardinal is more of that recipe, aggression and melody combined with an expert ease that allows the songs on this album to sound instantly memorable, yet have a depth that sees them reveal increasingly irresistible aspects the more you hear them. Mijic has improved immeasurably on what was already an impressive debut on the band's previous album, Symphony Of Sin, the mid-paced "Find My Way" illustrating the range and power he possesses, while the more introspective "Unconditional" sees him team up with ex-Leave's Eyes chanteuse Liv Krystine quite magnificently. However it's his full on delivery on the simply stunning "The Great Pretender" that really marks this man's arrival, the track hitting like classic Crown Of Thorns, but with even more potency. It's also the album's highlight, but with Köhne on fire throughout, "Messiah Complex" simply bristling with intent and "This Is Your Moment" brooding and bolshy, there simply isn't any let up in the class and quality on show.

Keyboard man Chrism however is where the new facet to the EC sound appears on Cardinal. Even given that he's following in some mighty big footsteps (Ferdy Doernberg (Axel Rudi Pell/Freedom Call), Alessandro Del Vecchio (ehh… basically everyone in melodic rock/Frontiers circles) and Steve Williams (Power Quest)), his contribution to this album really stands out. "Utopian Dreams" and "Rome's On Fire" show he can lead from the front, however across Cardinal his sense of drama and power constantly infuses Eden Curses's already established sound with fresh force. Cleverly however, it isn't at the expense of what this band has always been about, namely guitar driven melodic majesty.

It is no exaggeration to suggest that Eden's Curse may well be the best and most consistent melodic hard rock group to appear since the turn of the century. Neither is it a stretch to declare that Cardinal is as good, if not better than anything else they've created before. Put the two together and we may just have the best MHR album of the last decade and a half on our hands right here!

Track Listing
1. Prophets Of Doom
2. Sell Your Soul
3. The Great Pretender
4. Messiah Complex
5. Find My Way
6. Kingdom Of Solitude
7. Utopian Dreams
8. This Is Our Moment
9. Rome's On Fire
10. Unconditional (Featuring Liv Kristine)
11. Saints & Sinners
12. Jericho

Added: October 28th 2016
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Eden's Curse online
Hits: 1872
Language: english

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Eden's Curse: Cardinal
Posted by Scott Jessup, SoT Staff Writer on 2016-10-28 21:30:48
My Score:

The melodic group Eden's Curse have a new twelve track album titled Cardinal, an album that the band apparently took some time to write, two years in fact. Formed in 2006 Eden's Curse are a multinational group and Cardinal is their filth studio album and also their second with lead vocalist Nikola Mijic. With a strong input on the guitar and keyboard fronts Cardinal is a mixture of melodic hard rock and metal with symphonic, progressive and also those power metal influences on lively tracks such as "Prophets Of Doom" ,"Messiah Complex" and Utopian Dreams". Liv Kristine(Solo Artist, ex. Leaves Eyes) shares the microphone on the very good "Unconditional" and a great match up it turns out to be. Another highlight "Jericho" is based on the Battle of Jericho, this biblical tale has been taken and turned into Cardinal's adventurous go to number and it's also the longest track, there's so much to like about this track from the vocals to that riveting musical input it's a great way to close this album. Cardinal is my introduction to Eden's Curse, and it has certainly left me with a positive impression.

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