ALBUM REVIEW: Northward – Northward

Album CoverIdeas can come at the most spontaneous times and unexpected moments in life. How you take these ideas is what could make an impact. For NIGHTWISH singer Floor Jansen and PAGAN’S MIND guitarist Jørn Viggo Lofstad, that occasion came when they performed together. Even though they had never met before, they had such a creative magic between them; discovering a mutual love for hard rock in the process. Fast forward to 2018, NORTHWARD are here and their album is ready to be unleashed.

NORTHWARD aimed to give the audiences stripped down hard rock and that’s exactly what their self titled album gives. This straight up sound is bold and strong. It is mandatory to have the volume cranked up to the max when listening to this record. The album kicks off with the single While Love Died, a single that has received praise from fans and critics alike. It’s refreshing to hear a melodic song that is in your face and willing to make its presence known.

Across the record, there is a variety of different melodies. From first notes of While Love Died to the closing title track, all these tracks have something in common. They are fresh, bold, melodic and memorable. They also show the talent these two music icons possess. The bombastic opening of the track Drifting Islands draws the attention of the listener instantly. It also demonstrates the pure vocal power as Floor and her sister Irene provide a powerful duet. It displays a fantastic melody and makes its presence known throughout. It’s definitely a song that listeners won’t be forgetting any time soon.

A popular type of song with fans of hard rock is one that provides sass and Big Boy does that perfectly. This song is guaranteed to bring out that inner dark side out of every listener that dares to embrace the track in all its glory. The funky rhythm, the catchy chorus and the bombastic guitar work is sure to get the listener in the mood for bringing fourth that inner beast. Set it free and loose with Big Boy.

Stripped down acoustic Bridle Passion allows all kinds of emotion to come to the surface. It’s known that acoustic does have the power to show the sheer talent of musicians, with regards to NORTHWARD this is the case. It provides a break from the sheer distortion seen in previous tracks yet it stills keeps the listener engaged. The record ends on a beautiful note with the tones of the title track. This uplifting ballad is the phoenix rising from the ashes giving music lovers alike a fresh new sound that will be admired by me. It gives one last farewell before ending the album, it leaves them still wanting more.

NORTHWARD‘s self-titled debut is a definite recommendation and not just for hard rock fans. The record’s portfolio of empowering sounds and the band’s impeccable talent will prove a treat for general music lovers. It’s a truly remarkable album that comes recommended for those who are looking for something different.

Rating: 8/10

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