W.E.T. – Rise Up

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Review by Julian Handley

Frontiers Records

W.E.T. gate crashed the melodic rock party with the release of their perfectly crafted debut album in 2009. Such was the impact of its arrival that fans and the media alike were caught off guard by its modern sound and solid rhythm making it both a classic yet contemporary release, complimented by a stunning production quality.

W.E.T. is the amalgamation of Robert Såll (the “W” from Work of Art ), Erik Mårtensson (the “E” from Eclipse) and Jeff Scott Soto (the “T” from Talisman) as the mainstay of the band, accompanied by Eclipse members Magnus Henriksson and Robban Bäck. It is with daunting anticipation that the  follow up release the eagerly anticipated “Rise Up”, is under massive pressure to live up to the expectation of thousands of fans worldwide, having been supremely spoilt previously.

Thankfully Rise Up could well go on to Eclipse – pardon the pun (Ed: No!) – the debut, such is its appeal, offering anthemic mid tempo rockers and velvety smooth ballads in equal measure. A wonderfully hook-laden colossus of an album showcases the extraordinary dynamics of  a melodic rock marriage made in heaven. The songwriting, musicianship and immense production propels the term “classic rock” into the new century, whilst paying homage to the glory days of the 1980’s.

The first release to be lifted as single/video is ‘Learn to Live Again’, a radio friendly gem which features the first time vocal duet between Mårtensson and Soto, bleeding the lyrics as if their lives depend upon it, leaving the listener in the state of aural ecstasy as they complement each other’s vocal styles effortlessly. My personal stand out track is the beautifully, emotional ballad ‘Love Heals’, which would render the most macho amongst us to a state of  utter goo with its heart rending delivery. Come the year end this album is likely to feature very highly in a vast majority of  media/fan polls.

W.E.T. – Rise Up8 out of 10

Track listing:

  1. Walk Away
  2. Learn to Live Again
  3. Rise Up
  4. Love Heals
  5. What You Want
  6. The Moment
  7. Bad Boy
  8. On The Run
  9. Broken Wings
  10. Shot
  11. Still Believe In Us
  12. Still Unbroken