Format: ape + cue + log
Genre: Hard Rock
Original Release Date: 2003
Label: SPV GmbH
The Bulgarian guitar hero Nikolo Kotzev is back with Brazen Abbot - Guilty As Sin - the fourth album after Live And Learn (1995), Eye Of The Storm (1996) and Bad Religion (1997). If I refer to the booklet, Nikolo says "This album came in difficult times. At times it felt like I'll never make it ...". Honestly, I though this project was long dead considering the last record was made in 1997. By the way, you might know this guitarist from his metal opera Nostradamus (2001).
Nikolo added "Inspiration was not a friend of mine for quite a while. However, with the help of friends and relatives I moved on and wrote music, which is the fruit of my darkest hours". Well, what an inspiration ... as this Guilty As Sin is by far the best Brazen Abbot album. Reminding me the best moments of Rainbow, Whitesnake or Deep Purple, Guilty As Sin is an homage to the 70's (vintage hard rock).
Three voices, three stars : Joe Lynn Turner (Deep Purple, Rainbow), Göran Edman (Talisman, John Norum, Yngwie Malmsteen) and Jorn Lande (Ark, Masterplan) for twelve wonderful songs - each vocalist singing 4 songs. These vocalists combined with Nikolo's song-writing is a guaranteed product, isn't it ? Yes it is. There are so many magical moments inside Guilty As Sin. As said above, Deep Purple, Rainbow or Whitesnake resuscitate each time Mic Michaeli plays with his organ, sending us back to the 70's, with a modern sound of course. Parenthetically, the production is pretty cool.
I need to mention my favorite tracks ... even though there is not a single weak song. The opener - One Life To Live - with Joe Lynn Turner is an outbreak of hostilities. The guitar melody is outstanding, the bridge and the chorus get printed immediately and I really like the lyrics of that song : "I got one life to live, And I'm gonna live it my way, One dream to give, I'm gonna get it some day...". Joe Lynn Turner is enormous. But only people who don't know him can be surprise by this sentence :)
The second song - Eyes On The Horizon - with Jorn Lande is another highlight. I like the vintage keyboard sound and Jorn is as good as ever. This song would have found its place in Masterplan's first album. I am always astonished how Jorn sound like Coverdale. Who said this song will remind you ... great Whitesnake ? The third track - I'll Be Free - is a wonderful ballad. This is the turn of Göran Edman to sing : a typical ballad, with the acoustic guitar and the great piano of Nikolo. A magical moment as far as I am concerned. Slip Away - the fourth track - is another homage to Deep Purple. Close your eyes, listen to Joe and you will see how the magic operates on you. A great song again. Mr. Earthman with Jorn is another "rocket" in my face. Gosh ! What a chorus !!! Jorn "scores" again on Bring The Colors Home but this time, I let you discover the emotions of this track on your own. Supernatural .... speaks from itself :)
Ok you got the picture ! Now run and check this one, especially if you like the above mentioned bands ... or the above mentioned vocalists. A pleasant surprise. Thank you very much Mr. Kotzev. Reviewed by Danny