At some point almost every long running band has to deal with line-up changes. Creative differences, personal clashes and business differences are usually at the core of this. Evergrey from Sweden have had their share of line-up changes as well, but this time it was really a radical cut. Three of the five members left, including two important song contributors within the band. This left Tom Englund (vocals/guitar) and Rick Zander (keyboards) as the creative core behind Evergrey. They set out working on new material, recruiting three new members along the way. With this in mind I’m wondering how their new album, entitled The Glorious Collision, turned out.
After a couple of spins I’m convinced that the band came out fighting with The Glorious Collision. A change will do you good as the saying goes and in case of Evergrey that’s certainly true. Tom Englund and Co managed to find their own groove again. This leads to inspired songs like ‘Leave It Behind’, ‘You’,’Wrong’, ‘To Fit The Mold’ and ‘It Comes From Within’.
The band’s sound is also slightly modified. It’s still Evergrey, but with some different influences as well. This makes The Glorious Collision sound fresh and inspired. Rick Zander’s keyboard work is more in the forefront this time around. Some songs like ‘Wrong’, ‘Restoring The Loss’ and ‘The Disease’ have more of a rock feeling to them. This album doesn’t have the suffocating all-hope-is-gone atmosphere as some of the bands previous work such as In Search Of Truth, Recreation Day and The Inner Circle. It’s still a dark album, but there’s finally some light on the horizon.
I do have some critical notes as well. With over an hour’s worth of material this album is a long one. With one or two songs less it would have made a more lasting impression on me. The presence of three would-be ballads sometimes makes The Glorious Collision too sappy for its own good. This is Evergrey, not some bloody MTV hyped plastic emo crap.
All in all The Glorious Collision by Evergrey made a very favourable impression on me. It shows that the band is bigger than the sum of its individual members. The album features some really killer song material, despite the presence of too many sappy semi ballads. Tom Englund and Co are still alive and kicking, are you?