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CODE The Enemy Within Escape Music(2007)

Code sees vocalist Sherwood Ball teaming up with two former Grand Illusion members, namely guitarist Ola of Trampe and Anders Rydholm (bass/keys/guitars) and Greg Bissonette (Dave Lee Roth/ELO/Steve Vai) guests and handles the drum duties.

The band aim to produce quality songs that the band members feel are lacking in melodic rock today, a tall order indeed! Luckily they do pack a punch tune wise with the title track which deals with domestic violence, not normally a subject covered by melodic rock acts. Like many tunes on the album this one features neat and precise guitar solos couple with driving keyboards and rhythm. 'In The Shadows' even sounds like Evergrey in the latter bands quieter moments.

Vocalist Sherwood Ball is similar in sound to Terry Brock (Strangeways/The Sign) and fans of Brock will enjoy this album as the music is like the Sign, with less pomp or even Vertigo, the project featuring ex-Toto vocalist Joseph Williams . 'My Time' and 'Sign Up For Love' are good, solid uptempo songs whilst 'How Can I Change The World?' sees the band pushing the vocals into the spotlight.

An enjoyable album for sure but you need to play it a few times as it is not an instant hit. Certainly better than the last Vertigo album and nearly as good as the Sign albums. One for lovers of thoughtful and well crafted melodic rock.


Review by Jason Ritchie

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***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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