A Nation Of Saviors

Blood Red Sun

Independent release, 2007

http://www.myspace.com/bloodredsun

REVIEW BY: Benjamin Ray

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 03/07/2008

So, Blood Red Sun, I hear you say.

What do you want to know? They’re a four-piece rock band with a female drummer, a social conscience and an inability to decide if they want to be 80s or 90s rockers.

Ultimately, A Nation Of Saviors opts for the latter, dressing itself in big sounds and big hooks such as would be found on a Bush or Stone Temple Pilots album. However, their philosophies are rooted in early U2 and the Clash, two bands that influenced this one, even if it doesn’t sound like it.

So why bother with another four-piece rock band with electric guitars? Well, this one isn’t like the others. Jason Nadeau sings instead of shout or feel sorry for himself. The rhythm section pushes the song forward, rather than act as a quiet counterpart for overamplified guitars. And the band’s ear for melody and love of big sounds makes each cut sound immediate and important.bim_ad_daily_vault_print_250

Really, rock hasn’t sounded this good in quite a while, even if Blood Red Sun doesn’t break much new ground. Personally, I love bands that strive hard for an arena sound: if you like Live, U2 and Soundgarden, this is definitely the band for you. Rather than go the popular route of garage rock revival – stripped-down arrangements and the like – Blood Red Sun reaches for the sky, particularly on the ballad “So It Goes” and the Radiohead-like “Pray For Rain” which needs to be heard loud.

If you’re too young to remember the alternative heyday, this will give you an idea of what it was all about. Calling on the early U2 philosophy, Blood Red Sun believes in getting up and doing something about problems (dishonest media, following instead of leading, etc.) instead of moping. There’s not a lot to laugh about on this disc, nor is there a need to hit the skip button. It’s that good.

The disc isn’t entirely derivative of other bands, though. The production is loud and made for the digital age, and a few songs like “Love Letter” have the sort of garage rock and Linkin Park sound that is found in a lot of modern rock. If you’re the sort that loves Arcade Fire, this may be a little too loud and blunt for you (except “Icarus”).

But if you love straight-up rock, particularly the early-90s type, this is an excellent disc that should have made some Top 10 lists from 2007. Granted, Blood Red Sun’s failure to break new ground means this disc would have fit comfortably in playlists from 15 years ago, which will make it more appealing to those living in the past (like me) than those looking for a new sound.

Say what you will. Finding a great CD these days is a chore. This is one. Enjoy it.

Rating: A-

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© 2008 Benjamin Ray and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Independent release, and is used for informational purposes only.