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Live: The Turn

New singer, old sound for post-grunge survivors.

Considering he claims to have written their songs as well as sung them, Live were surely taking a gamble replacing estranged frontman Ed Kowalczyk with Unified Theory’s Chris Shinn on their first new album in eight years.

Maybe that’s why there are few risks taken with the content, as songs such as lead single The Only Way Around Is Through and Natural Born Killers employ the band’s trademark touches of post-grunge melodrama allied to big stadium rock choruses. It’s neither subtle nor adventurous, but you can’t keep a good hook down on booming anthems like The Strength To Hold On and We Open The Door.

Shinn isn’t one for the showy vocal histrionics of his predecessor, but on the final track, the quietly alluring ballad Til You Came Around, he shows he can emote with the best of them. Ed is dead, Long live Live? Well, it’s a start./o:p

Johnny Sharp
Johnny Sharp

Johnny is a regular contributor to Prog and Classic Rock magazines, both online and in print. Johnny is a highly experienced and versatile music writer whose tastes range from prog and hard rock to R’n’B, funk, folk and blues. He has written about music professionally for 30 years, surviving the Britpop wars at the NME in the 90s (under the hard-to-shake teenage nickname Johnny Cigarettes) before branching out to newspapers such as The Guardian and The Independent and magazines such as Uncut, Record Collector and, of course, Prog and Classic Rock