If you have a good thing going, keep it going. Denmark's Raspberry Park returns with their second album, aptly titled At Second Glance. It's kind of apropos, as I remember I was skeptical about their first album at first listen. But after listening became a fan. With At Second Glance, there's good reason to enjoy them even more.
Yet, curiously, the second time around, I'm thinking, "Who do these guys sound like?" There's something familiar about Raspberry Park beyond their first album. Wait for it. They sound like Last Autumn's Dream. Much of this observation comes from two things. It's the combination of Mikkel Bryde's raspy, yet melodic voice, where he sounds like LAD's Mikael Erlandsson, and Raspberry's classic European AOR melodic hard rock sound. Honestly, Bryde and Erlandsson could have been brothers separated at birth.
But dispensing with that novelty, this album basically rocks, maybe a tad heavier than previously. Most everything moves at a moderate to swift tempo with groove and rhythm guiding most every song. Then toss in some really dynamic melody and harmony from both guitar and vocals. Catchy lyrical twists grab your ears. Sleep With The Lights On is a great example. Finish things off with copious amounts of blazing guitar solos. Actually that twin guitar feature is commanding. For instance the riffs and leads rise with authority within I Won't BAck Down, Look My Way, and Depending On A Miracle, all definitely hard rockers. There is one ballad in Madeleine, developed mostly by the vocal arrangements and subtle keyboards. All these things are wrapped up in the simplicity of AOR accessibility, the arena-ready kind. Bottom line: it's all good. Raspberry Park's At Second Glance is solid, well-crafted, and entertaining AOR melodic hard rock. Premium stuff, and easily recommended.
Raspberry Park's At Second Glance is solid, well-crafted, and entertaining AOR melodic hard rock. Premium stuff, and easily recommended.
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