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Diamond Dogs, The: The Grit and the Very Soul
The Diamond Dogs The Grit and the Very Soul album new music review

Diamond Dogs: The Grit and the Very Soul

Rock/Classic Rock
3.5/5.0

With their fourteenth album, The Grit and the Very Soul, The Diamond Dogs with principal and vocalist Soren 'Sulo' Karlsson, continue to be 35 years and a North Sea removed from their roots. Whether playing a English club or Irish pub, The Diamond Dogs deliver a classic rock rooted in simple but stylish elements that would make The Stones, The Kinks, Mott and Ian Hunter happy. The songs of The Grit and the Very Soul are both historical and fresh, and nobody's doing it as quite as well as this ensemble.

The Diamond Dogs also got fundamental in their recording of The Grit and the Very Soul: the songs were recorded live with all instruments including violin and mandolin playing together during the takes. While you might expect a certain rawness to the production, the reverse is true. There's true clarity and vibrancy across this work. With little doubt, The Grit and the Very Soul will be considered one of the best sounding Diamond Dog albums.

However, I'm not that equally enthusiastic about the songs. Certainly, they're diverse and creative. Yet many emote a melancholy that sometimes stifles the whole: Be Here Tonight, Don't Turn Me Away, or Heart of the River are culprits. Perhaps, this feeling is because there seems to be more ballads here than with my most recent experience with the Dogs, the reissue of Black River Road.

Nevertheless, there is real genius here. Greetings from Isaac's Hill, Last of the Lovers, and delightful When the Morning Comes to Get Me are classic and quintessential Diamond Dogs. Even The Smiths cover Please. Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want is quite surprising.

While typical of The Diamond Dogs, The Grit and the Very Soul delights in its authentic live sound, but sometimes disappoints in the songs. Nevertheless, for fans, it's easy to recommend.




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In Short

While typical of The Diamond Dogs, The Grit and the Very Soul delights in its authentic live sound, but sometimes disappoints in the songs. Nevertheless, for fans, it's easy to recommend.

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