Europe - War of Kings (2015)

Europe is always remembered as one of  the great hard / melodic rock band of the '80s. Not just because of The Final Countdown, but songs such as Cherokee, Seven Doors Hotel, Ninja, Storm Wind, oh how can one forget those glorious days. Slowly, this band reached the new era with their music exactly updated within each year they passed. Each album from Secret Society,  Last Look at Eden, Bag of Bones, they found them self new musical playground to hang in. The same thing happened on War of Kings, which is Europe latest studio release this week, marked their 10th studio album.

War Of Kings , the first song with the same title, is medium pace melodic rock. You got that riffs, that can be modern yet got many vintage sounds inside. The usage of organ sound is reminiscence on '70s Deep Purple. Surely Europe has once again try to create new atmosphere here, as this song's character are to be repeated again thoroughly the album. The second on the list is much more happy-cheerful in mood. Hole In My Pocket is where John Norum happily played his whammy bar to create some Jimi Hendrixian riff. Not the first time we heard, notable song Scream of Anger in the past also got lots of this guitar tricks.  These two are pretty much in the same mood as in California 405, Days of Rock 'N' Roll. The most vintage song they "recreate" is Angels (With Broken Hearts), which kind of '80s Rainbow thing.

Some of the songs are truly in modern rock, fusion of alternative, grunge, hard rock, such as Praise You, kind of classic Seattle rock. Nothin' To Ya, with that drum roll, Red Hot Chilli Paper in mind. In the last part, the straightforward Light It Up is enjoyable finishing song, before the bluesy instrumental Vasastan.

War of Kings is one rich hard rock album from Europe. Surely you can't find any trace of Final Countdown  any longer (they are long time disappeared actually). On the other notes, John Norum is still leading the interest with his guitar playing. Joey Tempest also the other character that let the song come alive with his voices. Compare to previous Bag of Bones, this one is not much different, although there are seem to be more vintage than before. Quite hard to give more comment on this album, it is simply new set of songs where continued their many creative ideas. On the last interesting thing is the album cover. The chess illustration is a nice thing to have in rock album cover. It will make a great graphic for the running European Individual Chess Championship, which is happened in this very same week in Jerusalem.

Metal Harem class: ********** eight stars out of ten

Buy it Here - Amazon

Europe - War of Kings  (2015)

01. War Of Kings
02. Hole In My Pocket
03. The Second Day
04. Praise You
05. Nothin' To Ya
06. California 405
07. Days Of Rock 'N' Roll
08. Children Of The Mind
09. Rainbow Bridge
10. Angels (With Broken Hearts)
11. Light It Up
12. Vasastan (Instrumental) (Bonus Track)

Line Up:
Joey Tempest - Vocals & Guitars
John Norum - Guitars & Backing Vocals (ex-Dokken)
John Leven - Bass & Backing Vocals (ex-Glenn Hughes)
Mic Michaeli - Keyboards & Backing Vocals (Brazzen Abbot, ex-Glenn Hughes)
Ian Haugland - Drums (Brazzen Abbot, ex-Glenn Hughes)

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