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| 20 January 2021 | Reply

Label: Frontiers Music s.r.l.

Release Date: January 22, 2021

Rating: 88%

Reviewer: Todd “Toddstar” Jolicoeur

They’re back… Wig Wim have dusted off the instruments, pulled the microphone out of storage, and pulled together a killer set of rockers for their latest installment.  Disc opener and instrumental “The Second Crusade” takes us down a different path sonically and doesn’t quite prepare us for what is to come.  Title track “Never Say Die” kicks the doors down after the intro and we are reeled back nearly a decade to a time when these guys unleashed melodic rock gems on the world.  The vocals are anthemic and contagious while the guitars and rhythm section work together to support the track.  Be sure to check out the solo on the bridge… with all of its riffage, pings, and squeals to please every air guitarist in us.  “Shadows Of Eternity” is a mainstream rocker that benefits from some solid guitar work and a hurried tempo from the bottom end that drives the track from open to close.  “Where Does It Hurt” has a slightly different feel to it with the opening riff, but Teeny’s pings and squeals that dance across the track as Glam slams his vocals all over the musical tapestry reminds us of not only where these guys have been sonically, but that they are still there and want us to join them.  This is one of the tracks I go back to time and time again as I spin this disc.  “Dirty Little Secret” has a cool cadence that pushes the track down the line while the bass line keep the song flowing.  Teeny’s guitar licks keep the song fun and work with Glam’s rich vocals to whip the track into shape as it moves along into one of the best solos on the disc and the banter that reminds me of Gene Simmons’ turn on “Christine 16” back in 1977.  “Northbound” is a cool instrumental that allows Teeny to showcase his six-string prowess while Flash and Sporty provide a bottom end that keeps him reeled in, even when he seems to want to run away with himself and the track.  “Hard Love” comes along and has a cool swagger woven into the track that builds the bands sound out with a song that combines a slightly different vibe with the tried and true sound they already have.  The guitars are solid on this track, but the bass lines sneak up on you and deliver the goods.

“Hypnotized” dials everything down while the song builds up through the intro.  We soon get a solid foundation from Flash’s bass thumping bass lines and Sporty’s skin pounding.  The swirl of vocals and guitars in the mix build a wall of sound that draws you in and gets you headbanging and singing along.  There is something gritty about the lead vocal on this track that stands out, especially when the chorus hits.  “Kilimanjaro” has a blended guitar sound of electric and acoustic from Teeny that adds depth and punch to the track and disc overall.  The drums have a cool groove to them that keeps things interesting and moving while the vocals play off of and with the guitars.  “My Kaleidoscope Ark” is a cool track that shows us the softer side of Wig Wam and vocalist Glam without sacrificing the bands sound or the vibe we are accustomed to.  This track is proof positive that the power ballad is alive and well in 2021.  After listening to this track, I want to go back to high school and dance THIS CLOSE to that special someone and grind against each other for 4:34.  Yes, this song is that good.  “Call Of The Wild” is an interesting track, in that it has those components we have come to expect from these guys, but has a slightly different sound and groove.  Maybe this is where they demonstrate to us that they are maturing along with us.  Soon the chorus drops and we are reeled back in and realize the band has simply added a sonic weapon to their arsenal.  Disc closer “Silver Lining” is a great song to close the disc out with at it seems to tie together the different facets of the disc.  The mellow vibe that marries with the guitars on the bridges and transitions sets off vocals that climb into higher than normal range.  The rhythm section keeps the song in perfect time as it moves along for more than six minutes taking the disc out nicely.

Tracklisting: The Second Crusade – Never Say Die – Hypnotized – Shadows Of Eternity – Kilimanjaro – Where Does It Hurt – My Kaleidoscope Ark – Dirty Little Secret – Call Of The Wild – Northbound – Hard Love – Silver Lining

Line-up: Glam (Åge Sten Nilsen) (vocals) – Teeny (Trond Holter) (guitars) – Flash (Bernt Jansen) (bass) – Sporty (Øystein Andersen) (drums)





Category: CD Reviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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