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Articles Home » 1988 Articles » 220 Volt - 1988 Eye To Eye
 
220 Volt - 1988 Eye To Eye



ARTIST: 220 Volt
ALBUM: Eye To Eye
LABEL: CBS
SERIAL: 460906 2
YEAR: 1988
CD REISSUE: 2003, Power Play, PPRCD - 1969001

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Joakin Lundholm - vocals * Peter Olander - guitars * Mats Karlsson - guitars * Mike Larsson - bass * Peter Hermansson - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 The Harder They Come * 02 I'm On Fire * 03 Beat Of A Heart * 04 Eye To Eye * 05 Love Is All You Need * 06 Live It Up * 07 Dog Eat Dog * 08 Dangerzone * 09 Still In Love * 10 Money Talks * 11 On The Other Side

WEBLINKS: www.220volt.se


Background
A case of a good Swedish heavy metal band turning out to be an exceptional melodic hard rock band. By the time 'Eye To Eye' was released five years after their career start, 220 Volt had already released three albums. All reasonably OK, but when compared to their countrymen, it paled somewhat. Still, CBS obviously saw something in them, and managed to keep the Volt boys in tow all through those years. 'Eye To Eye' was arguably their best album, combining a sound which integrated the best bits of Return, Def Leppard and Europe. Added to the mix was the production work of Max Norman. You can tell these boys have benefitted from Mr Normans handywork. Listen to those awesomely mixed drums for example! Now thats what I call a drum mix!


The Songs
There's no better way to start off an album with a perfect entree, and we get that with 'The Harder They Come', with staccato guitars and some sonic drums. Lundholm's vocals are better than anything else he's recorded, bringing a comparison to those Norwegian guys in Stage Dolls (Mr Flakne) and also Return. The power strut is amplified on 'I'm On Fire' which has some faint echoes of early Talisman in there. One of the best songs on the album is 'Beat Of A Heart', which is Shadowking meets Def Leppard. Nice chorus with a mellow guitar surge through the middle section. Another highlight is the title track 'Eye To Eye'. Lundholm really lets fly on this one, soaring vocals over the top of some beefy melodic rock with a chorus to match. They slow down and catch their breath on the power ballad 'Love Is All You Need' which only the best Swedish bands seem to do. They move into a faster paced mode with the upbeat rocker 'Live It Up' while they can't completely turn their back on their past HM exploits, for which 'Dog Eat Dog' is an apt reminder. 'Dangerous' is a Ratt rip-off, even the Pearcy mannerisms and stolen guitar lines invoke memories of 'Out Of The Cellar'...wonderful! Another beautiful ballad is the emotional 'Still In Love'. The last couple of songs 'Money Talks' and 'On The Other Side' are average rockers at best, but thankfully offset by those that have gone before them.


In Summary
The band continued to release albums well into the nineties, but I think without doubt that 'Eye To Eye' is the pick of the bunch. Check it out for the quality of the songs, Max Norman's production, and if you love any of the aforementioned bands listed above.


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Comments
#1 | RobVox66 on September 07 2010 02:54:54
Actually listened to this album today. EYE TO EYE actually got some play here in The States back in the day...Great, Solid effort that still holds up today!
#2 | jefflynnefan on September 10 2010 00:31:26
I agree with you Robvox66 this is indeed a great album from beginning to end. Surprised that there aren't that many comments about it.
#3 | gdazegod on September 10 2010 00:36:33
I've been playing this one quite a bit lately. Just love that drum sound! Max Norman.. worthy
#4 | rkbluez on January 17 2012 11:20:20
Hope someone reissues this album again...maybe Rock Candy...I to love it and the one before but sold my copy to a friend years ago and now it's OOP.

Agree George Max Norman could make everything sound so huge and powerful.
#5 | super80boy on August 21 2016 15:59:55
Concur - this is probably their best album with huge production values and yes those drums are killer! The team decided to re-work their sound in a more melodic hard rock vein and it worked in spades. Side One's first five tracks are stellar, one after the other. I also hear some Ratt in the closer 'Money Talks'.
 
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