OXYGEN - review added 12th June 2012
Album Review: Final Warning (2012)
For fans of: Hard Rock
"Final Warning" marks the debut album from Swedish rockers Oxygen. The band's style is an upbeat spunky mix of AOR and hard rock, taking plenty of cues from the 1970s and 1980s, and putting them through a blender with modern production values.
The musicianship is more than ample, though it definitely feels like it plays second fiddle to the singing. Listen closely enough and there's a lot to like however. The drumming is perhaps too basic, but some of the guitar riffery is stunning. Tony Niva's singing is good without doubt. He's quite high pitched and reminds me of ex-Saga vocalist Rob Moratti...so much so in places I checked to make sure it wasn't him using an alias.
The songwriting isn't going to set the world alight. How could it with an opening song title like 'Janitor Of Love'? However, the album's upbeat vibe is enough to brush aside any worries about silly titles. as is the actual raw feel of the songs. Technically they might not be perfect, but sometimes it's what they do to your heart, not your head that matters.
Track-wise, the aforementioned 'Janitor Of Love' is actually rather good, as is the smooth 'When Tomorrow Never Comes', and the achingly catchy 'Gold From The Future'.
"Final Warning" is very cheesy but surprisingly enjoyable. The vocals won't work for everybody, but it's worth checking out just in case they work for you.
Overall (Not An Average Of The Above):
01. Janitor Of Love
02. Anything For You
03. When Tomorrow Never Comes
04. I Remember
05. Gold From The Future
06. We Must Fight
07. I Wanna Know For Sure
08. Bring Back The Joy
09. Best Days Of Our Lives
Tony Niva / Lead Vocals, backing vocals
Roger Ljunggren / All Guitars
Marcus Persson / keyboard, backing vocals
Bengan Andersson / Drums
Label: Escape Music