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Articles Home » 2009 Articles » W.E.T - 2009 W.E.T
W.E.T - 2009 W.E.T

LABEL: Frontiers
YEAR: 2009


LINEUP: Jeff Scott Soto - vocals * Robert Sall - guitar * Erik Martensson - guitar, bass, keyboards, backing vocals * Magnus Henriksson - guitar * Robban Back - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Invincible * 02 One Love * 03 Brothers In Arms * 04 Come Down Like Rain * 05 Running From The Heartache * 06 I'll Be There * 07 Damage Is Done * 08 Put Your Money Where The Mouth Is * 09 One Day At A Time * 10 Just Go * 11 My Everything * 12 If I Fall



Well, you've seen and read all the hype. Members of Work Of Art, Eclipse and Talisman have combined to create what many are saying is the melodic rock album of the year. And how about the name? W.E.T.. really, is that the best they could come up with. I know it's supposed to represent the bands that this trio are best known for, but I would've thought that a name like Ecliptali Artwork was a much better choice! All fun aside, W.E.T are guaranteed to bring melodic rockers to their knees. Jeff Scott Soto fans will need no introduction, and believe me there must be a gazillion of them over at the Noticeboard, all bowing at the same altar. All three bands mentioned above have been reviewed here previously, and all have attained above average marks, and we're not about to deviate here either. Don't be thinking that this is some Swedish West Coast wimpfest. This is actually quite heavy in places, no doubt due to the guitar work from the various players involved here. You can't fault JSS's vocals, he sounds pretty damn fine.

The Songs
The album's first five tracks are excellent. Melodic rock doesn't get as good as tracks such 'Invincible', the immense 'One Love', or the huge anthemic quality of 'Brothers In Arms'. 'Running From The Heartache' has a fantastic chorus, the lead in work is good too. The first ballad 'Come Down Like Rain' is certainly a majestic affair, but it's the heavy as horses solo section that makes this one a winner for me. The second ballad 'One Day At A Time' is a bit of a mellow killer. If it was me, this would be my pick as the first single to be given to radio. I love the racy nature of 'I'll Be There' which has Journey bookmarked in places, particularly the bridge and solo sections. Neal Schon may or may not be impressed. Further to the Journey comparison, you can hear Jeff pulling off some Steve Perry moments, particularly on the semi ballad 'If I Fall'. It's scary actually.. in a good way. Some tracks don't quite reach the dizzy heights at the start of the album. 'Damage Is Done' and 'Put Your Money Where The Mouth Is' are both adequate but there's missing something. 'Just Go' is at the harder end of the spectrum, reminding of some Euro metal track I can't quite pin down (I'll get it eventually), especially the chorus. 'My Everything' is similar to songs at the front end of the CD, didn't really like the guitar tone on this one, sort of spoilt it for me unfortunately.

In Summary
I've read a bit of feedback about the album elsewhere. That's why I've refrained from reviewing it any earlier. Most of the reviews are pretty good, but as for being album of the year? Umm, not for me. A couple of the songs just drop a notch in quality, but for the most part W.E.T is a solid effort, spectacular in places. It may yet make my Top 10, I'll see what the final month of the year (decade) has to offer. Don't be hesitant about purchasing this CD, shout yourself an early Christmas present.

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#1 | roadrunner158 on November 30 2009 10:27:40
I totally agree with your rating (even though I happen to like "Put Your Money..."Wink. Great CD with only a small number of no-so-great songs. Btw.: Robert Säll did not contribute a lot to this CD according to the credits (I think he was co-writing three or four songs and playing guitar on one or two). To me, this merely seems to be a marketing stunt...
#2 | george_the_jack on November 30 2009 15:48:56
Being a huge fan of Jeff,I honestly believe that he has never sounded better...The vocal performances here can be compared only with EYES's 'Cheyenne' AOR majesty! The Journey influences are more than obvious as Eric Martensson's fantastic songwriting contribution to this affair is a proof that he probably surpassed himself! Certainly, W.E.T. takes a place in my top-3 list of 2009.The other two winners for me so far are Sunstorm's 'House of dreams' and Mastedon's 'III'.
#3 | Totochris on December 02 2009 11:22:21
I actually have no hesitation to give this one the full rating (10). And I don't see any other album this year to beat this one (at least as far as the already released albums are concerned). I even would go as far as to say this might become the album of the decade for me. Seventh Key (The raging fire), Praying Mantis (Nowhere to hide) and last year's H.E.A.T. and Borther Firetribe are other contenders - but that's probably it. At least as far as traditional AOR is concerned.

And considering the hype - sometimes you get the impression that this forces some listeners to give lower ratings than they otherwise might have given. So better ignore the hype and listen carefully. Sure - the first half of the album is the better one, but that doesn't make the second half a bad one. The album is still extraordinarily balanced, is contains easily 4 - 5 absolute classic tracks (with the reast still being very good) and the production and performances are of the highest class. I do admit that I have a weak spot for Jeff's voice, but in the end that's just another reason to rate this album so highly.

On a side note: I've seen some comparisons made to Giant in previous reviews and I'd say they are probably true, but I am very doubtful, if the reformed Giant will be able to beat this release next year. If so - all the better!
#4 | george_the_jack on December 02 2009 16:52:20
'Have a weak spot for Jeff's voice'??? Ok...Your Giant comparison and reference is spot on tho.
#5 | Totochris on December 03 2009 16:27:03
Let's put it this way: he's got an amazing set of pipes :-) Be patient, I'm not a native speaker!
#6 | george_the_jack on December 03 2009 17:03:57
Don't worry m8! I'm not a native speaker either.Sometimes I wonder how George and the others put up with my english! LOL! Grin
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