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Salem: Attrition
Salem - Attrition CD Album Review

Salem: Attrition

Melodic Hard Rock/Metal (NWoBHM)
4.5/5.0

England's Salem is another band that bumbled about in the New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWoBHM) movement in the Eighties, with little to no success. Revived in 2010, the band's fortunes have significantly changed. Since their resurrection, they've released two very fine and successful albums, 2013's compilation Forgotten Dreams and 2016's Dark Days, with all new material. Now the band returns with their third long player, Attrition, and the success continues.

Salem Band Photo

Salem

There are many facets to the NWoBHM style. Salem has always seemed to lean to the version that begins with melodic hard rock and then gives it a metal edge. Call their sound both hard and heavy, yet with an abundance of melody, harmony and groove. Metal heaviness can come simply from a deeper bottom end in the rhythm section; metal sharpness in the twin guitar riffage and bristling solos.

Yet also dropped in the arrangements is some simple AOR accessibility. It can come, often, from the aforementioned twin guitar harmony. Or with I'm The One, it comes with the mixture of acoustic and electric guitar, a melodic and catchy chorus and vocal arrangement, and a pleasing rock groove. Yet surrounding those things, the sharp metal guitar lines rise. Something of the same AOR feeling comes with the song Stay With Me. It may start with some brisk metal riffage, but it then breaks down into some lighter parts, especially in the first half and notable in the vocal arrangement and chorus, again. Otherwise, some pure melodic heavy metal comes with the sharp and heavy Taking Control, Black and White, and Warning Signs. Then there's the speedy Isolation, which also moves on a rock groove and bristles with sizzling guitar lines. Suffice to say, Attrition is another win for Salem: a fine and entertaining album that brings the classic NWoBHM style forward to the present day once again. Easily recommended.



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The Bottom Line

Attrition is another win for Salem: a fine and entertaining album that brings the classic NWoBHM style forward to the present day once again. Easily recommended.

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