Monday, 31 March 2014

Cornerstone - Arrival 2000

Format: flac + cue + log
Genre: Hard Rock, Rock,
Original Release Date: 2000
Label: Massacre Records

When you first take a decent listen to this album, you can't help but get carried away by their deep and moody style of melodic rock. Cornerstone combine those atmospheric moments of Magnum and Dare with the sonic fluidity of Ten. There's intelligence and thought riddled all the way through 'Arrival', and one can easily say that this is not your typical euro melodic rock release. The combination of Doogie White (Midnight Blue, Rainbow, Nikolo Kotsev) and Royal Hunt bassist Steen Mogensen is an unlikely one at that, but the presiding mood of the album is intensely deliberate, something akin to a progressive rock album, which I suppose is not unexpected considering the Royal Hunt connection.

The Songs
One suspects that 'Arrival' has a concept theme imbued within it, one based on life and evolution. The beautiful keyboard layers give us an introduction of majestic proportions as we drift effortlessly into the second track 'Walked On The Water'. The energy and tempo increase on 'Jungle' which moves beyond primal with searing guitar riffs and cascading keys. 'Straight To The Bone' is another rich effort a la Magnum 'Wings Of Heaven', while 'Fooled' could very well be it's partner in crime off the same album. 'Reload' is an atmospheric masterpiece which you just have to listen to under a pair of headphones and I'm sure if Darren Wharton did something like this it would be a winner. The Bob Catley influence makes itself heard on 'Gift Of Flesh' and to ensure that this album finishes off on a climax we get the awesome 'I'm Alive', with cutting guitars and a wall of keyboard layers which every budding air keyboardist would be smothered by!

In Summary
To hear Doogie White in this context is a surprise, and admittedly he's grown in leaps and bounds in my opinion. His singing over the top of this luscious melodic landscape is compelling to say the least. it's a great melodic rock/semi prog crossover, and I'm sure it will appeal to those with more grandiose tastes. I can't wait for the next one, ten tracks aren't enough!!