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Articles Home » 2012 Articles » Gaskin - 2012 Edge Of Madness
 
Gaskin - 2012 Edge Of Madness



ARTIST: Gaskin
ALBUM: Edge Of Madness
LABEL: High Roller Records
SERIAL: HRR 251 CD
YEAR: 2012

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Paul Gaskin - vocals, guitars, keyboards * Dave Norman - drums, backing vocals, keyboards, & programming * Andrew Solomon - guitars * Mick Cross - bass

Special guests: Nik Turner - saxophone * Emma Hudson - Backing vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Just Before Dawn * 02 Damnation * 03 Heart Like Thunder * 04 Mans' World * 05 Wake Up Dead * 06 Lost & Lonely * 07 The Contract * 08 Bedlam * 09 Te Amavi * 10 Edge Of Madness

RATING:


Background
Recently reviewed here was Gaskin's debut album from 1981 'End Of The World'. A good NWOBHM contender, the band only survived a couple of albums before disappearing off the map in the mid 80's. A surprise to many that band-leader Paul Gaskin resurrected the band for 2012's magnificent return 'Edge Of Madness'. If 80's bands like Tytan (and by default Lion) and Grim Reaper are your pint of lager, then stick around at the bar. 'Edge Of Madness' benefits from a good solid production and all the cool technology available these days, not like what was available to Gaskin back in 1981. Making the best of a 'not so good' situation back then, the band are now a very different proposition in 2012, much more mature sounding, and making up for lost time it would seem. The band secured a deal with German label High Roller Records for this solid hard rock set. There is a darker tale to 'Edge Of Madness' born out of reality; and that is Paul Gaskin's admission to a Psychiatric Ward after a few years battling the demon drink and smoke. IT got to a point where he nearly took his own life, and from that point onward, depression was difficult to get past. Paul was really living on the edge of madness, but thankfully, he's here with us today giving it a second shot.


The Songs
Gaskin give us a sweeping keyboard introduction 'Just Before Dawn', and before you cry out 'oh no, it's Steve Harris and Iron Maiden all over again!', they deliver us some 'Damnation', with pinch harmonic squealies, an impressive drum sound, and the occasional keyboard, which by all rights, Paul should have left out. 'Heart Like Thunder' is a rampant metallized affair in the vein of Grim Reaper, in fact I can just see Nick Bowcott doing his tapping thing on a song like this. 'Man's World' is a little drier in the mix and slower in tempo. It's got a mixed and variable middle section which sounds a little jumbled, and then a saxophone jumps out at you on the solo section. Woah, that was a surprise!The sax was played by Hawkwind's Nik Turner. 'Wake Up Dead' sounds a little lead-footed and weighed down, however the track 'Lost & Lonely' corrects matters in a jiffy, a snug and tight little rocker which plugs away in typical Brit hard rock fashion. 'The Contract' got lost in a keyboard wash that reminded me of some exotic Arabic like passages. Not quite Ten, perhaps a little like Diamond Head, but you get my drift. I sorta liked it.. just.. 'Bedlam' is back to basics hard rock, and this is the approach which suits Gaskin best. We're nearly at the end of the album, two tracks to go. 'Te Amavi' is an acoustic instrumental, while the album finishes up with the title track 'Edge Of Madness'. It's not nearly as edgy, mad or crazy as the songtitle would suggest, although I did hear some distant laughing in the backdrop. Was it a patient locked up in Bedlam was it? Anyway, it starts out as a power ballad that gets progressively heavier as it goes on. Some good solid riffing and drumming happening here. A good way to finish.


In Summary
This is a pretty reasonable effort, considering it's a long awaited comeback, and considering Paul's personal demons which he has now overcome. The band sounds excellent when it's all pedals to the metal. Hope Gaskin continue on where they off, they certainly deserve having the spotlight shone on them again!


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#1 | gdazegod on April 23 2013 14:26:08
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