An 'end of the world' scenario is the concept behind Mob Rules' debut album, "Savage Land".

Mob Rules's influences, although primarily AOR, do not limit themselves to the standard. There are subtle details in the form of Scottish bagpipes (in the closing section of the appropriately entitled "Rain Song"), and the strong track "Secret Signs" incorporates flutes that create a folky atmosphere reminiscent of Rhapsody and Skyclad. The album has several strong tracks (like the aforementioned "Secrets Signs", but "Blaze of First Warning" too), but tends to suffer from a feeling of same-ishness. Musically everything's up to standard, but when you progress through the album the songs sound a tad much alike. There are nice sing-along choruses, the guitars sound chunky and cool, but nothing really sticks out. I am afraid that will doom this album to the grey area of "pretty decent releases that somehow didn't manage to sufficiently stand out".



Written April 1999


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