It's been four years since we've heard from Sweden's Eclipse. However, their singer and songwriter, Erik Martensson, has been busy writing for W.E.T, Toby Hitchcock, Giant, and Jimi Jamison, among others. Keeping his skills sharp has paid off as he teams up again with guitarist Magnus Henriksson for Bleed and Scream, a crackin' good disc of melodic hard rock.
Honestly, in the opening tracks I thought I was hearing the follow up to Treat's 2010 epic, Coup de Grace. Then, moving forward Bleed and Scream began to sound like a mixture of the same with Whitesnake. But those were first impressions.
Fundamentally, Bleed and Scream is a pure melodic hard rock album in the best tradition. It moves on the strengths of great vocals and vocal arrangements, compelling guitar solos, good melodies, and catchy lyrical hooks, all with sharper, near metal, edge. As with the previous album, Are You Ready to Rock, there are no ballads. Although, A Bitter Taste fools you at the start with its slow opening as does About to Break, but both turn into more anthems than ballads.
The rest of the album simply rocks with the formidable vocal/guitar power of Erik Martensson/Magnus Henriksson putting the smack down on your ears. Bleed and Scream, the first single, accomplishes this with vigor. Battlegrounds is a rock romp, moderating between heavy and catchy. Falling Down has that feel of a Whitesnake rush. Generally, its' all good and sounds great with no filler. Are You Ready to Rock had a few dodgy tunes, but that's not the case here. Martensson said they wanted to out do themselves with the new album. With Bleed and Scream, Eclipse raised the bar for themselves and leaped over it. Strongly recommended.