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Loudness - The Sun Will Rise Again

Label: Universal International
Format: CD download
Released: 2014
Reviewed By: Mark Gromen
Rating: 8/ 10


While most North Americans jumped aboard the Japanese bandwagon circa “Thunder In The East”, there were a host of older albums (some in their native language) that offered a heavier, pre-MTV approach. While there are a couple of tracks that sound as if they've been lifted from the late 80s, most of this ripping, guitar oriented platter dates to that earlier age. Following a length, theater-of-the-mind instrumental, ‘Got To Be Strong’ launches into proto-thrash mode. ‘Never Ending Fire’ begins with guitar god Akira Takasaki contorting the strings into unnatural positions, as an impassioned pace rollicks along. The high pitched titular cut and/or a more simplistic ‘The Metal Man’ could be one of those Eighties tracks, the later riding a post-Blackout Scorpions riff. ‘Mortality’ brings the intensity back up, before a grungy ‘The Best’ takes a departure for the other material, veering close to an era that most Loudness fans would sooner forget. ‘Rock You Wild’ is truth in advertising, living up to such a lofty moniker, only to be outdone by the chunky (Hey, Hey Hey) riffs of follow-up, ‘Greatest Ever Heavy Metal’. At 8:13, it's the longest inclusion, affording Takasaki a chance to strut his stuff, in a more conventional guitar solo vein. ‘Shout’ slows to a mid-tempo ballad, while ‘Not Alone’ ends with a mix of loose high-hat cymbal Sunset Strip catwalk and proggy, FM staple.

 

The so-called “Bonus” edition (which probably isn't worth the additional Asian import price) includes a DVD with just a video of the title cut and a track-by-track commentary from guitarist Takasaki.

 
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