"A glistening benchmark for melodic rock excellence since the mid-80s": FM continue to glisten on Old Habits Die Hard

London’s AOR lifers FM keep up the good work on album number 14, Old Habits Die Hard

FM: Old Habits Die Hard cover art
(Image: © Frontiers)

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A glistening benchmark for melodic rock excellence since the mid-80s, FM have been admirably prolific in the years since their eagerly received re-formation in 2007. 

Old Habits Die Hard is their eighth post-return studio record, and like Synchronized (2020) and Thirteen (2022) it defies the notion that bands of this vintage idly phone in some new material every year or two. Impressively, singer Steve Overland continues to confound common sense by sounding every bit as soulful and vivacious as he did back on the band’s classic debut Indiscreet 38 years ago. 

On the likes of slick, shuffling opener Out Of The Blue and the radio rock opulence of Leap Of Faith, his vocals are obnoxiously great, as FM salute their earliest trademarks while pushing a more contemporary edge. 

Conversely, the sun-kissed, bluesy pop-rock of California and the glitter-ball strut of Blue Sky Mind are subtle but ingenious swerves away from the norm. 

Fucking magic.

Dom Lawson

Dom Lawson has been writing for Metal Hammer and Prog for over 14 years and is extremely fond of heavy metal, progressive rock, coffee and snooker. He also contributes to The Guardian, Classic Rock, Bravewords and Blabbermouth and has previously written for Kerrang! magazine in the mid-2000s.