Tuesday 2 August 2011

The Quill Make New Start

A year after the Swedish band released their last album In Triumph in 2006, singer Magnus Ekwall left the band. This was quite a loss since Ekwall, with his typical voice that sometimes reminds a lot of Chris Cornell, was really important for the band. This looked like the end for The Quill. But now there's a new album Full Circle with new singer Magnus Arnar; yes another Magnus. He awaited the heavy task to make everyone forget about Ekwall on the thirteen songs that are on the album.

The Quill - Full Circle (Ronald Says 6 out of 10)
What is striking right away is that his voice is different than Ekwall's. It's less impressive and his reach seems a bit smaller. He tends to outcry himself and is overdoing it sometimes. This is especially noticable in the terrible ballad 'No Easy Way Out'. Fortunately there are mainly heavy songs on the album and they sound pretty nice most of the time. In the old line-up you could mistake the band for Soundgarden in their early years, although they never came near the band from Seattle. It lacks subtlety and variation for that. But now they go back to stoner rock instead. And especially on these testosteron loaded songs is where The Quill sounds best.

On 'Medicine' things go wild with pumping riffs, a nicely building middle part and grooving drums. On other songs, '24/7 Groove' and 'More Alive' they let things fly and their hair down as well. It's uncomplicated heavy rock and it's understandable they throw in a quiet song now and then to prevent the record from having not enough variation. Unfortunately these are the bad moments of the album and 'River Of A Moonchild' together with the mentioned 'No Easy Way Out' is a total miss.

For many The Quill fans it will be strange when they hear Full Circle for the first time. It's not a bad record and there's enough to enjoy. But it all sounds quite the same and it won't be enough to forget about Ekwall. It's doubtful if Arnar will be able to perform the old songs convincingly in the upcoming live shows.

This review has been published on ROAR E-Zine in Dutch over here.

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