We have waited - for a long time... We have stood through the leaving of Al Pitrelli, have barely survived the shock of Zak Stevens deciding to part with the band and now - that...
It had been heralded as a step back to the roots, but trust me, it is far away from that. In parts this album sounds, and this hurts me as a SAVATAGE-fan a lot, almost boring! I don't know, if it's because of the delays due to TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA, because of the fact that this album has been conceived in intervals or whatever, but I really cannot understand the rave reviews everywhere!
"Commissar" is a SAVA-song of the old school, very varied, with good structure and everything. The more than ten-minute "Morphine Child" also bears everything in it that we have come to expect from SAVATAGE. But on the other side we also have songs like "Drive" or "The Rumor", which just leave sooo much to be desired.
The rest isn't bad, don't get me wrong, but there is another factor coming into play, for which some people for sure will want to stone me, but for me the return of Jon Oliva to full lead-vocalist duties clearly is a step back. Compared to Stevens it becomes evident that the long break has done is voice no good, his volume and range have suffered a lot… A pity!
For a different band this album would have been quite god, but if you know, what SAVATAGE are capable of… I'll take some "Edge Of Thorns" now…