Power of Metal.dk Review

Von Hertzen Brothers
Nine Lives
Style: Progressive Rock
Release date: 18 June, 2013
Playing time: 51:21

If there's one thing I love about Finland's Von Hertzen Brothers, it's that they know how to give us variety and personality. These guys have the chops to do whatever they want; but, like their other albums, "Nine Lives" is a big ol' bag of tricks of all shapes and sizes.

Brother Mikko, the singer, has a wonderful voice that can be used in so many ways. You see, "Nine Lives' features great little ballads, rocking accessible songs, and soaring prog pieces. They can do all of these comfortably, and Mikko can change his voice to fit the style. "Insomniac", for instance, features some very high vocals with much melody. However, "Coming Home" features Mikko channelling Billy idol a bit with that low and almost creepy style that bounces off the bass lines so well.

I think this ability is not just consigned to Mikko. All of the instruments follow suit as they can change to play whatever style they so desire, and they spar with Mikko very well, too. In other words, this album is simply fun and a joy to hear, even if it's not the most challenging music to absorb. Yes, I just used the word "fun" to describe a prog album! What these guys lose in challenging music, they gain in purely interesting music.  The only qualm I really have, though, is that they don't feature an incredible prog "epic" of sorts, like unto "The Willing Victim" on their older album of the same name.  I do wish they would have included an incredible closing piece like that one.

However, if you are looking for a great album of semi-catchy prog rock, look no further. You won't get any epics or any ambient tracks, but you will get the Von Hertzen Brothers rocking your socks off and creating some wonderful melodies, too. 

01. Insomniac
02. Flowers and Rust
03. Coming Home
04. Lost In Time
05. Separate Forevers
06. One May Never Know
07. World Without
08. Black Heart's Cry
09. Prospect for Escape
10. The Climb (Bonus Track)
11. Do What You Want With Me (Bonus Track)
12. Between the Lines (Bonus Track)
Label: Decca International
Distribution: DoingBeingMusic
Artwork rating: 80/100
Reviewed by: Jason Spencer
Date: 6 August, 2013
Website: www.vonhertzenbrothers.com