Somewhere between classic 80's AOR and melodic, with a touch of glam, hard rock is Sweden's H.E.A.T. They gained some major recognition and fine reviews across the greater European theater with their premier self-title work. For their sophomore follow-up, Freedom Rock, H.E.A.T. stays the course. Catchy melodies, strong vocal arrangements, fiery guitar solos, and larger-than-life hooks drive every song on this disc. It's sounds good, and ever so effortless for this Swedish sextet.
H.E.A.T. can rock hard as on Beg, Beg, Beg, Nobody Loves You, or Danger Road, or simply deliver arena ready melodic rock on We're Gonna Make It to the End or Stay. Either way the blistering, often quick, guitar work throughout gives these songs a piercing edge. Some listeners might suggest Freedom Rock is heavier, more brisk, than their first release. What's absent here is a typical rock ballad, with closest being Shelter or Everybody Wants to Be Someone. But they latter may start like a ballad, but ultimately soars like edgier AOR.
Overall, H.E.A.T.'s Freedom Rock delivers the goods once more, solid melodic hard rock ala the 1980's. My only concern is that H.E.A.T. may trending towards formulaic repitition, like Last Autumn's Dream for instance, rather than breaking new ground. Nevetheless, they have a good thing going, and they do it very well. Very recommended.