Wednesday, February 10, 2016

STALA & SO: ”Stala & So”

Rating: RRR
Label: Escape Music 2015
Review by Kimmo Toivonen

Album number three from Stala & So… and probably the most straight-forward, hard rocking album of their career so far. The band has chosen a ”Sin City”-influenced color theme to the artwork (black/white/red) and somehow that can be heard in the music too. The happy-go-lucky glam rock is a thing of the past, these songs are darker and moodier. The band’s look seems to have been toned down too, no skirts or feather scarfs…

This is almost an album of two halves, with all the best songs on the first ”side”. I say ”almost” because the opening track ”I Need More” could have been placed on the second half. It’s just a rather average straight-ahead rocker with the Hammond-sounding organs taking it to the Uriah Heep territory. ”When The Night Falls” is one of the video songs and  my favourite, thanks to its’ hard-hitting hook. I also enjoy the next trio of songs, ”Headlong”, ”Now ’n Everyday” and ”I Can See It In Your Eyes”. While they are different in many ways, there seems to be a common thread running through them, a certain kind of melodic, melancholic theme. And I’m pretty sure that Marillion’s ”Kayleigh” provided inspiration to ”I Can See It In Your Eyes”.

The remaining five songs… ”You Don’t Mind” is the one I’d choose over ”I Need More” to be on the ”better half” of the album. The others aren’t bad either, but somehow the hooks just don’t work for me.

I’ve kind of liked all of the Stala & So albums, but I think they’ve yet to release their career-defining breakthrough album. Let’s hope it’s the next one.

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