Arctic Rain

From Frontiers Music's webpage, "ARCTIC RAIN started as a collaboration between songwriter/keyboardist Pete Alpenborg, guitarist […]
February 22, 2023
Arctic Rain - Unity album cover

From Frontiers Music's webpage, "ARCTIC RAIN started as a collaboration between songwriter/keyboardist Pete Alpenborg, guitarist Magnus Berglund, and singer Tobias Jonsson. Later on, bassist Gert Daun and drummer Jonas Jönsson joined forces for the recording of their debut album. The aim for the band was to write songs with strong melodic rock vibes based around the type of tasteful instrumental harmonies typical for a lot of bands in the '80s and '90s. A revival of sorts, but with a modern touch, both melodically and for the overall sound. And with that target in mind, yes, they most certainly hit the bullseye on their debut album. This is their sophomore release, and has 11 songs.

"One World" is the first. It takes a bit to get going, but when the sound kicks in, it is heavy with keyboards, and a bit on the longing side. The verses are sort of terse, but the big sound comes in at the chorus. The title track is a heavier, mid-tempo rocker. The vocalist has a really nice range, and the background is filled with harmonies, riffs, and keys, but even the rich chorus isn't exactly memorable. Maybe they will find their stride as the album progresses. "Fire in My Eyes" hears Tobias really stretch out into the upper ranges. They don't work on their musicianship, that is for sure. The chorus is also a bit more memorable.

"Piece of Mind" might be the sound I was hoping for. Keys and guitars carry the opening melody, which is a little more jovial than previous songs. Again, the band's musicianship is excellent, they just need a little help in the songwriting department. "Laughing in the Rain" begins with more promise, but still fails to make a memorable mark. The chorus has a simple melody, and the guitar solo smokes, but it still doesn't do a lot for me. "Believe" begins with tender and emotive tone, that come to life in the chorus. But the slower tempo holds the song back a bit. "Kings of the Radio" is perhaps an ode to when this type of music enjoyed regular radio play. Again, the song has promise but the key change in the chorus seems unnecessary. This band has all the talent that you would want, but just quite string it all together properly.

"When We Were Young" has a big sound with an equally big let-down. They are so close to assembling the puzzle. "Time for a Miracle" is a softer and shorter song. Have they finally found the missing pieces? I am not sure, but this song is pretty solid. Keep to these shorter ones where there isn't a lot room for experimentation, that's what I recommend. "The Road Goes On" closes the album. It's another near miss. As I mentioned above, the cast that they have assembled here has a lot of talent. The singer, keyboardist, and guitarist in particular are amazing. But what they still need a decent amount of work on is the songwriting. They just missed the mark too many times.

5 / 10









"Unity" Track-listing:

1. One World
2. Unity
3. Fire in My Eyes
4. Peace of Mind
5. Laughing in the Rain
6. Believe
7. Out of Time
8. Kings of The Radio
9. When We Were Young
10. Time for A Miracle
11. The Road Goes On

Arctic Rain Lineup:

Tobias Jonsson - Vocals
Magnus Berglund - Guitars
Kaspar Dahlqvist - Keyboards
Gert Daun - Bass
Richard Tonyson - Drums

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