Soul Exchange, Bloodbound, 2016
Even though I believe this is their second album, for me this is my first time listening to Swedish band Soul Exchange. And the first name that popped up in my brain while listening to this was Demon. Might be due to the fact that some songs deal with topics like the ripper, pain, aliens, etc. Or that both bands create a working marriage of NWOBHM with prog.
Anyway, the quintet open with City Of The Ripper. Bells chime, and the stage is set for a song that slowly but surely creeps into your system. Especially the chorus with majestic harmony vocals hits home hard. I love harmony vocals, and this band treats them the way it should. Besides that, lead singer Daniel John has a voice tailor made for the genre. Powerful yet melodic. Next track Left Behind is more proof of the quality in the band. A clever riff put to good use as a foundation for the melodies. And a solo break that again shows prog tendencies. Also the tasty use of keyboards and organ does not go unnoticed. They really add to the overall sound.
Personal favourites are Torn To Pieces and Passenger Of Pain. But there are a lot of songs that will find a welcome home with those into melodic metal and more progressive accents.
So happy I got in touch with the band, this is a fab album! Head on over to their website and buy it!