FROZEN RAIN – Ahead of Time
The return of an AOR/melodic rock band consisting of musicians from Belgium plus a German vocalist renowned for his work in Domain and Evidence One (Carsten Schulz), this second album “Ahead Of Time” features a balance between classic, stirring guitar lines, thicker keyboard parts and an amazing, world class vocal performance. Songs like “Breakin’ Out”, the up tempo , guitar solo prevalent “We’re Gonna Rock” and slightly ambient title track make you feel like you are transporting back into mid 80’s AOR- with European style and grace.
Imagine an amalgamation of Journey, Giant, The Storm and Saga and you’ll get an idea of how each song just finds its way into your brain cells- from gifted melodies to musical hooks that make you want to return to the record again and again. Two keyboardists usually means a dominant mid-range but guitarist Rik Priem makes sure his riffing and solo spotlights are equal in the mix, some of his best work taking place on the radio friendly “Not At Home” where he’s willing to dazzle even in microbursts.
Carsten may be better known for more of his power and progressive metal bands, but Frozen Rain and this material gives him the chance to stretch in different textures, even developing more of his good natured personality on the anthem-like “The Way That You”. Four years between albums gave the sextet enough time to really reflect and impart their passion into this style- the results of wish could hold up as easily as many of the classics from their influence pool. Brilliant, vibrant- “Ahead Of Time” lives for sing-a-long, air guitar action.