DEMON – Unbroken (2012)
Founded in UK at the end of the seventies by lyricist/vocalist Dave Hill and guitarist Mal Spooner, DEMON is one of the most musically interesting and socially aware hard rock bands of their age.
Following the remastered re-issue of their catalog (the great ‘Heart Of Our Time’ was already presented here weeks ago), Demon is releasing “Unbroken”, the band’s fresh CD featuring new material since 2005, and it sees them back to a classic hard rock sound.
Demon are enjoying somewhat of a resurgence, heading the inaugural British Steel Festival in 2006, as well as gaining slots at Firefest, Germany’s Bang Your Head festival and the prestigious Hard Rock Hell event to name but a few. They have also been recently announced to return to Sweden Rock in 2013.
Oh, and they have also finally released a brand new studio album after seven years.
“Unbroken” impresses you straight off the bat with its presentation and its attention to detail, being available in book form as standard in a time when most albums scrimp on details such as booklets or charge you extra to buy them as limited editions.
The book itself is a well thought out mixture of the lyrics to all the songs on the album and rare live shots of the band in action.
The music, that this very nice package carries – which is the important bit – is probably amongst the best they ever released.
They have returned to classic, lovable hard rock here, slightly bombastic, artistic, with elaborated mid-tempos but on occasion slower or faster, depending on the mood of each one song.
Dave Hill’s vocals are intact, strong and instantly likable, accompanied as usual by some very intelligent and socially conscious lyrics.
“Prey” preceded by a 1 minute intro that bears the same name too, is a rather uptempo and energetic opener with an euphoric and uplifting chorus. Hill sounds as good now as they did back when Demon started off all those years ago, if anything age has matured his vocals and led to a greater control over them as well as aiding the songwriting process.
“Shine A Light” continues the powerful dynamic feel as the album starts to form and take a hold of you. The vocals are raucous and the solo is on fire.
Title track “Unbroken” is pretty much a reference to the band’s longevity and unbroken spirit. A bit different animal than the previous, more melodic and harmonic.
“Wings of Steel” is a keyboard laden tune which shouldn’t come as much of a surprise as Hill wrote it with the keyboard player. It simply has one of the most breathtaking choruses on the entire album, epic and almost AOR infused. Oh, and also sports a helluva melodious guitar solo.
“Fill Your Head With Rock” is an anthem about Sweden Rock Festival that the band has played on a number of occasions. It really rocks.
“Take Me To Your Leader” is spacey but rocking too, with a big thick, multi-tracked vocal in the chorus that sticks out.
“Private Lives” is another track that Dave has written with keyboard player Paul Farrington, musically pretty melodic rock oriented and clever lyrics about the whole instant celebrity cult and paparazzi thing.
The very melodious and rhythmical midtempo “We Can Make It, (If We All Try)” tells another beautiful story, followed by “What About The Night” drenched in luscious keys, a classy ‘theatrical’ Demon tune deliciously devilish fun.
Finally “I Still Believe” is a lighters and a hands in the air anthem written in the trademark Demon way, a ballad yes, but ardent and powerful.
“Unbroken” is easily Demon’s best work since the ’80s, and one of the best in the entire and long career of this great band.
Just 10 tracks avoiding fillers, intense, classic hard rock sounding, rockin’ your ears and heart from all angles: musicianship, lyric content, production…
This CD represents what is arguably the best Demon and makes you wonder if they will finally get the full recognition that they deserve as the momentum continues to build behind this veteran act.
So long life to Dave Hill and his company of rocking men and may they continue to rock us, for a long, long time to come.
01 – Prey (Intro)
02 – Prey
03 – Shine A Light
04 – Unbroken
05 – Wings Of Steel
06 – Fill Your Head With Rock
07 – Take Me To Your Leader
08 – Private Lives
09 – We Can Make It
10 – What About The Night
11 – I Still Believe
Dave Hill – Vocals
Paul Farrington – Keyboards
Paul Hume – Guitar
David Cotterill – Guitar
Ray Walmsley – Bass
Neil Ogden – Drums
BUY IT !