Dutch singer Arjen Van der Linde has been featured here a couple of times before. And even though it seems that, over the years, his music has become less rock and more mainstream, there is no denying that this has not detracted from his artistic integrity. If anything, it seems a progression, to convert ideas and lyrics into songs that speak more easily to the listener.
Opener Katie Lee is a great example, catchy melodies, good story, should be a hit if there is any justice left in the world. Also there seems to be a more broader spectrum in his songs nowadays. In Your World would feel at home in a country album, Oh America opens with a chilling violin arrangement before the acoustic guitar and his voice take centre stage, accumulating in another goosebumps moment. Miss Molly, the first single, is an upbeat pop rock song of which the melodies stay in your head for days. Safe to say that Arjen, again with the help of famed producer Erwin Musper, has come up with another batch of great songs.
So dear reader, every reason why you should check in on this album is valid. This is darn good and will appeal to a whole lot of people, and not only to the East of my border!
A while back I described the second album Vanderlism by VanderLinde as a promising classic rock album. I thought at the time that if the band raised their game on a couple of things, future would really be bright. So now this fourth album Perfect Sadness has landed (I sadly missed the 2011 release Wind And Rain) and it is quite hard to fathom this is the same band. Or actually the same singer and principal songwriter, as I understand it.
At the time I thought that Arjan Van der Linde should work on his lead vocals a bit more. Man, I am pretty stunned at his development. He sure raised the bar, and more than a couple of notches! While it may be a bit of a pity that the rock days are gone for the most part, in return we get a very sophisticated, open and, by lack of a better word, mature album. Again recorded with help of famed producer Erwin Musper and recorded in his Cincinnati studio. A lot of songs have HIT written al over them, so it is no wonder that a beautiful track like Little Things will air alongside the pilot of a new American reality soap.
The press info describes this as a mix of Crowded House and Jason Mraz. That is not quite the way I hear it, but I can´t really pinpoint a more striking resemblance. Still I think that anyone into quality pop / rock should grab a bite of this pronto. It is that good and no wonder that they are really taking off in The Netherlands and Germany.
This Dutch trio operates in classic rock mode. They got some assistance from famous Dutch producer Erwin Musper and recorded 2 songs in his studio in the USA. But most of the recording and mixing was done in Germany.
The name is from singer, bass player and songwriter Arjan van der Linde. I can’t tell much of their history, as this is the first time I heard from them. So on the the album.
First song is a little reminiscent of Nickelback, mainly because of the steady riff used. Later on it becomes clear the classic rock tag is right. Sometimes acoustic guitar playing can be heard. But mainly electric guitar, bass, drums and vocals. And whilst Arjan has no bad voice, I do feel he can develop a little more. It will only make his delivery stronger. Maybe some whiskey and smoking to raw it up a bit ;-). Same applies to the songs, no filler, but little killer as well.
All in all a very solid release. Enough variation and feel. It is evident the band believe in what they do as the delivery is flawless and spot on. For fans of classic rock, I believe you can´t go wrong with this. I am curious how they will develop. For now congratulations!
Personal play tips: She´s Rock ‘n’ Roll, Unconcealed, Killing The Man.