The Gathering by Jorn
Release date : January 2007
Reviewed by Mark Fisher
Jørn Lande's vocals grace over thirty albums, so the frontman shouldn't be a stranger to admirers of Hard Rock, and Heavy Metal. Lande has accrued guest appearances upon countless albums in addition to material as part of Masterplan, an act which has garnered massive acclaim in spite of a discography that spans a mere two albums. Equally successful as Masterplan, Lande's solo profile is growing in legend.
To summarise, The Gathering mainly collects select tracks culled from Lande's early solo material, with compositions from 2000's Starfire (two) 2001's Worldchanger (six), 2004's Out to Every Nation (four) respectively featuring. Lande has embarked upon several projects during his career as well, and numbers lifted from the following reflect that; The Snakes' 1998 album Once Bitten (“Gonna Find the Sun”), Millennium's 2000 album Hourglass (“Hourglass”), ARK's self-titled 1999 debut (“Where the Winds Blow”), and Allen / Lande 2005 debut (“My Own Way”). To combat an altogether flimsy sound, each chosen song reappears in either remixed or re-recorded format. Digital mastering, meanwhile, was handled by Tommy Hansen.
If you're audibly unaware of Lande's works, his giant, soaring voice bears shades of both Alice Cooper and Jon Oliva, yet rivals the likes of Steve Perry (ex-Journey) in terms of range. Lande possesses the type of classic voice which isn't extremely prevalent nowadays, hearkening back to great acts like Iron Maiden, Whitesnake, Judas Priest, and Dio, but more specifically the traditions of both Heavy Metal, and Hard Rock. In usual instances, a comment regarding the artist's musical evolution would inaugurate a review of this specific nature. However, such a comment isn't warranted. Upon venturing towards a solo career, Lande was a master of the beloved anthem. These early works provide firm evidence to support that statement, and the same can be said of his later material. Generally speaking, the central difference between those earlier and later works is a heavy Blues undertone.
The epic “Something Real” inaugurates The Gathering, an album where each track motions the fist to pump. In terms of anthems, the number takes the biscuit so to speak. Whichever anthem your mind happens to name, “Something Real” can likely stand toe to toe against that specific cut. Exhibiting Lande at his very greatest, the difficulty lies in surpassing that zenith. Unfortunately, “Something Real”'s grandiose nature isn't surpassed, although The Gathering features a range of additionally impressive moments. The healthy appetite of both Journey and Lance King era Balance of Power admirers should be satisfied by the likes of “Bridges Will Burn”, “Worldchanger”, and “Hourglass”, whereas “Tungur Knivur” and “Big” lend the compilation a Metal-esque edge that'll inevitably appeal to Classic Metal fanatics. Collectively speaking, each respective track fuses extremely well against one another. For this reason, many new or casual admirers could mistakenly assume that The Gathering comprises wholly fresh material.
A fresh demeanour permeates The Gathering, a compilation which circumvents the occasionally dated sound which happened to be prevalent within the original recordings. Should you be familiar with the name Jørn Lande, yet take delight in those who boast potent Rock vocals, then you should unquestionably investigate Lande's material. In terms of quality, The Gathering stands defiantly tall, and figures alongside each and every record which actually boasts Lande's vocal contributions. To make a lengthy tale brief, The Gathering fails to disappoint.