I've been looking forward to this for a long time. Massive fan of Dan
Reed Network and their first couple of albums with killer beat and
groove. The FUNK, the wicked guitar work by Brion James, the tribal
drumming, the bass right up in your face. Bloody 'ell. The song "Ritual"
always send a shiver to the spine and it's THE perfect party starter.
Not to mention that Max Martin borrowed and stole every thing he could
get his naughty little hands on to launch his songwriting career. He
simply turned the likes of "I'm So Sorry" to Pop stuff and "Hit Me Baby
One More Time". And yes, he started out playing in a funk hard rock band
in Sweden in the late 80's.
First of all. Slightly disappointed at first spin and let me tell you
why. Not enough of funk and definitely not enough of hard rock and
guitars to be classic Dan Reed Network. Brion James playing in the
background of the production and several tracks are rather Pop/Rock than
funk/hardrock. Do not expect this to explode like popcorn in the micro,
it's overall sophisticated Pop/Funk with the occasional loud guitar. I
really don't see the point in releasing this as Network? It's their
first album in 25 years and people sort of expect the traditional beat
and sound? I mean. C'mon... that's the whole point in doing the comeback
tour and album?? Yeah? No? Release the six-string beast!!
Secondly. Don't get me wrong. It's still a good borderline great album.
Even though the spacey/trip-dance keyboards and several tracks are
provided 'ala SEAL and "Crazy" rather than DRN and 'Get To You'. Class.
Class. Can I get your attention? The first couple of tracks, "Divided",
and its follower, "The Brave", are fun and groovy DRN tracks though.
"Infected", the Prince wannabee. "Champion", here's where the SEAL sound
kicks in and the likes of "Heaven" and "Sharp Turn", could not be more
'scarface' even if they invited Al Pacino to the studio. It sounds very
commercial and deliberately like Top 40 stuff of the popular Seal years.
The instrumental track, "Ignition", the only tribal drumming on
Final verdict: Good. Solid stuff. It's obvious that some of these tracks
are going to work better as well as rock harder when performed live on
stage. And they were always the great live act. "Are we born to be
divided or born to be one".
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