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SALUTE Toy Soldier Escape (2009)


Created by the Swedish rock legend Mikael Erlandsson, Salute is an exciting new melodic rock outfit that has something fresh to say in an oversaturated genre. The band also features Martin Kronlund on guitars and bass and Imre Daun on drums and percussion.

There are enough hard rock melodies to encourage even the most cautious metal fan and there's some pomp and bouncy choruses to attract AOR fans so there is plenty on offer.

Erlandsson is a busy guy having just worked with his other band Last Autumns Dreams' on their latest album Dreamcatcher which was released earlier this year in Europe. Toy Soldier has many redeeming qualities: Erlandsson sounds great and he manages to sing the heavier rock tracks with plenty of gusto and yet float through the mid-paced numbers with equal aplomb.

The production is excellent with enough emphasis on each instrument and it's big enough the handle the meatier tracks. Perhaps it wasn't the best of ideas to finish the album with a power ballad ('Yesterday Always Been Gone') but there's enough character and enjoyment in 'Steel Desire' and 'Cheater' to forget the minor problems the album has. This is good stuff and hopefully it'll be an ongoing project.


Review by Neil Daniels

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***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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