Greenleaf “Rise Above The Meadow” review (by Koen Oostendorp)

Greenleaf “Rise Above The Meadow” review (by Koen Oostendorp)

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Greenleaf “Rise Above The Meadow”
Napalm records

There seems to be a revival in 70’s style hard rock these days. Bands like Ghost and Venomous Maximus are releasing top notch material with that trusted 70’s sound. Greenleaf is no different.  On this album we find a collection of unapologetic, rocking tunes. Some better than others, but there is no shame in that. To be honest, I had a little difficulty getting into this album at first. I was waiting for it to catch me off guard. After a few listens I realised that it didn’t have to. this is a record that doesn’t have any pretentions. It’s just a fun, heavy album. I liked most of the riffing on here,  the vocals were good, and there were some standout songs. PILGRIMS and LEVITATE AND BOW did strike me as being more than just average rockers. Not saying that the rest of these songs are just average fare, but these tracks stood out to me. I also thought FUNERAL PYRE was really nicely done. They took what could have been an unremarkable song and made it shine by making great use of dynamics.

Production wise, I am a bit torn. Greenleaf wants to sound vintage. And they succeed. However, I feel that the bass drumis utterly terrible and I would’ve liked to hear more definition in the bass. The toms sound very good and the guitar tone is perfect for this kind of music. So they get a pass.

I did have some problems with this one. There is one song one here that I can’t stand: CARRY OUT THE RIBBONS just gets annoying after a minute. I am calling out the band for including this subpar filler track on record. A MILLION FIREFLIES is not the perfect opener for this record. And that hurts the overall listening experience for me. The song isn’t bad, but that riffs just drags on for way too long. But by far my biggest complaint was that these songs burnt too slow. What I mean is that it took me an considerable amount of time to get into RISE ABOVE THE MEADOW. And that is not a good thing for a record filled with relatively simple music.

After reading this tou might think I didn’t like the album. I did. I (in the end) think it’s great fun and especially LEVITATE AND BOW showed that this is not a band to take too lightly .

Verdict :
Should you listen to this album? Yes. It’s not an essential piece of timeless brilliance, but why should it be. This is a record that doesn’t waste your time and gets straight to the rocking! I think most people won’t have such a hard time getting into it as I did. Go listen to HOWL now! It’s on YouTube.

Score: 7.40

grennl

(c) Koen Oostendorp

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