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DRAVEN Eden CNR (2009)

New (well relatively new as they have been gigging since 2004) young British based rockers Draven release this, their debut album, in May. They have head start on other new bands out there in that legendary producer Kevin Shirley (Aerosmith/Journey/Black Crowes/Iron Maiden etc) produced this debut album and another notable guest is respected musician Jeff Bova (Meat Loaf/Distance) who handles the string arrangements. The line-up is identical twins Frank Poli (guitar/vocals) and Jim Poli (vocals/guitars/piano), Danny Wood (drums) and Alex de la Fuente (bass). Oh and this album is a concept one loosely based on John Milton's epic poem 'Paradise Lost'.

There are three real musical gems on here. First up the heavy rocking delight of 'Itchy Finger' (complete with a sample from 'The Good, the Bad & the Ugly' film soundtrack) which is a definite single contender. The sort of song Motley Crue would kill for rather than the cack they serve up now… 'Don't Cut Yourself' is another great rock tune, like current US faves Hinder but better! The chorus is one of those that won't leave your head for days. 'Breathe' starts with a simple piano backing the vocals before launching into a real lighters-in-the-air emotion filled ballad. One of the best tunes I have heard so far this year and strangely this reminded me of the Verve!

Elsewhere 'I Don't Care' is another good slow burner whilst the title track has plenty of soaring guitar solos to keep the listener entertained. Only the eight minute plus 'Stranger' lets the side down as it loses its way in a melee of solos.

A very accomplished debut and if you didn't know any better you'd think Draven were a US band due to their confident delivery and big production. Another great rock band whose sound is modern yet respectively tips its hat to classic rock bands from the 70's and 80's, most notably Aerosmith. Now all we need is a triple tour bill of Draven, the Answer and Glyder…


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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