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Equator – ‘Fire’

posted 14 Jan 2016, 05:11 by Paul Woodward

(Independent)

Review By Woody

Norwegians Equator are a relatively new and young AOR band although ‘Fire’ is actually their second release. I have to admit as the initial pumping synths storm out of my stereo speakers to opening track ‘Emelie’ and assault my ears a wry smile crept on my face as I thought to myself ‘I think I’m going to like this!’ and I wasn’t wrong. As that opening blast implied Equator are indeed a very much keyboard driven act with extremely prominent keyboards throughout. It doesn’t make the album as soft as that may imply though, the guitar riffs are very chunky and driven which gives their sound a strong rock edge and energy.

‘Fire’ is only seven tracks long but it’s a very enjoyable short album, It’s exceedingly commercial and it’s all fire and passion as the album title suggests and on the whole a very positive and feel good collection of pure AOR. Full of pumping synths, smooth vocals, heaps of harmony vocals and delicious melodies which should make Equator the musical equivalent of crack cocaine to genre fans. They have a strong traditional scandi-rock flavour and should also have fans of bands like Skagarak and Giuffria abusing their air keytars with reckless abandon.

Lyrically these guys aren’t going to set the world on fire but the strength of the hooks and melodies make the clichés roll over you and have you singing along regardless and what should be cheesy never feels cheesy! The only other negative I could throw at ‘Fire’ is the production isn’t the best, it does have a slight demo quality feel to it, this didn’t stop me enjoying it in the slightest but did have me wondering how much bigger and slicker some of this songs would be if a load of money and a big name producer got a hold of them!

Equator should rub shoulders easily with their Scandinavian counter parts in Houston and Reach with total ease, I even detect a little bit of Roxette in their sound too, and fans of those acts should all be enchanted by these new guys on the block. It would be really cool to see these guys evolve their sound a little and with the backing of a label that could give them the boost they need to make their breakthrough to the AOR masses.

‘Fire’ is a very promising start from Equator and with a strong anthemic style to their song writing it should see them become very popular. The likes of ‘Emelie’, ‘Hold On To Your Heart’ and ‘Where No One Knows’ are already firm favourites with me and so I can only see bigger and better things in the future!

Track Listing: Emelie / Back On The Streets / Hold On To Your Heart / Set The Night On Fire / Without You / Where No One Knows / Does It Feel Like Love

Album Rating: 8/10

Woody’s Essential Track: Emelie

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