Days Of Jupiter – ‘New Awakening’ (Metalville) Print E-mail
CD Reviews
Written by Mark Ashby   
Thursday, 11 May 2017 04:00

Days Of Jupiter coverOne of the new generation of hard rock bands following in the footsteps of fellow Scandinavians Volbeat in an attempt to bring big, arena-sounding anthems to the masses, this third album from Sweden’s Days Of Jupiter lives up to all the superlatives hurled at in the press release which accompanied it to URHQ: bombastic, melodic and heavy.


Kicking off with the declarative ‘We Will Never Die’, complete with childlike backing vocal, it’s immediately clear that studied at the school of rock that has already brought us the likes of Nickelback, Theory Of A Deadman, Staind, Alter Bridge and Disturbed, as well as their afore mentioned Danish counterparts. And they have studied well, as this is a well-honed and highly polished collection of hard rock songs, which are big in every way, and especially in their ambition.


There is no doubt that these boys know how to craft a tune… ‘I Am Stone’ broils with an underlyjng fury that threatens to break through at any second – and does, but two tracks later, on the crunchingly intense ‘Wasted Years’: in the meantime, the former song punches as steadily as a middleweight contender in heavy training for his first title fight, with an almost metalcore edge to Janni Hilli’s vocal, as he snarls out the lyrics over a winding riff and a thumping rhythm, which is held down primarily by Magnus Larsson’s highly impressive performance behind the kit.


‘My Tragedy, My Curse’ has heavy rotation airplay written all over it: building with the intensity of a thunderstorm lurking just over the horizon, it reeks of the sweat generated by Mark Tremonti jamming with Rob Caggiano in a ‘Crossroads’-style trade off. ‘Wasted Years’ bursts out of the speakers with the fury of a slowly erupting volcano, its misleading intro blown away by a bombastic – yes, there’s that superlative – guitar hammerdown that just pummels my woofers into submission, before Larsson’s double kick work drives straight into your mid riff, leaving you gasping for breath. At the same time, they add plenty of atmosphere, with not one but two genteel bridge sections, the second leading into a ripping solo before subsiding back and hinting at the fury of the final section: the brief bass, guitar and drum beatdown just before the fadeout is as heavy as anything I’ve heard this year.


‘Erase’ is a slow power ballad of the type you’ve heard on the airwaves and seen on your TVs a million times: but, while the formula is generic, they pull it off with an aplomb that I reckon might just have The Dark Queen wetting her jeans when she hears it, especially when Hilli hits the note right before the solo. ‘Awakening’ marks the halfway point, and it’s a jagged little melody that twists and coils, bouncing off the harshness of the riff and a visceral edge to it that sends shivers down your spine.


‘If I Were God’ is straight out of the Staind/Disturbed songbook, but is delivered with panache, and Hilli’s vocal is sufficiently convincing in its delivery: but, once again, it is the drumming of Magnus Larsson that helps to elevate the song to the next level. ‘Insane’ sees the boys putting the pedal to the metal, with a touch of Korn style nu-metal to the intro section: but, that’s quickly cast aside as the main riff kicks in like Conor McGregor on steroids, as Hilli snarls the challenge to get out of the way ‘cos “it’s my time”.



Taking us into the last third of this 11 song collection, ‘Give In To Me’ is another powerhouse rocker, but with the sort of dark undercurrent that the likes of Alter Bridge manage to integrate into their music – managing to make it sound like a celebration, but letting the mask slip with the introspection of the lyrics. The same can be said of ‘Favorite Waste’ (their spelling, not ours): the riff and melody jump and bound, but there is a dark underbelly to its faux seediness – and it’s subject matter is just the sort of stuff Volbeat specialize in, exploring the manipulative side of human nature. Closer ‘Inglorious’ is another standard hard rocker, but again with a dark underside to it, both in terms of its content and delivery, it’s broiling riff and heavy downbeat feel emphasizing one of the best vocal performances of the album.


Every now and again, this hoary old music business, just like life itself, throws up a surprise… I genuinely didn’t expect to enjoy this album, especially as I am by no means a big fan of any of the comparative bands mentioned at the top of this review. But, it surprised me, and I did enjoy it – and I’ll probably enjoy it again (well, herself hasn’t heard it yet!). And that should be all that really matters, isn’t it?


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