Eclipse — Wired (Frontiers)
In the autumn of 2008, not long after Rushonrock launched, an AOR-tinged melodic rock powerhouse dropped their pulsating third album.
The band was Eclipse. And the album? The relentless Are You Ready To Rock.
Until then Eclipse had flown under the Rushonrock radar but a heady mix of Europe and Gotthard had us hooked.
“From start to finish this record shimmers, shines and shakes rivals to the core,” stated a glowing 9/10 review.
And 13 years later the super Swedes continue to set the bar when it comes to singalong hard rock with a pace making melodic heart.
Wired is a rollercoaster ride of electric anthems and sparky riffs.
It’s an album built on big choruses and giant, unshakeable hooks.
And it somehow manages to put 2019’s passion-fuelled Paradigm in the shade.
Frontman and co-founder Erik Mårtensson makes another strong case for becoming Joey Tempest’s heir apparent.
And axe slinger Magnus Henriksson carves out some of the tastiest solos we’ve heard in decades.
In the 20 years since Eclipse dropped debut The Truth And A Little More, the band’s barely put a foot wrong.
Mårtensson and Henriksson have become key pillars of the melodic rock community.
And Wired represents further, thrilling progress from a band always bold in their ambition and brilliant in their execution.
Reputations Carved In Stone
Do any of the songs here leap out and scream standout track?
No. And that’s because Eclipse fans are spoilt for choice when it comes to Wired’s sumptuous setlist.
There’s the brooding pomp of power ballad Carved In Stone.
The festival-ready adrenaline rush that’s Twilight.
And the bullish Bite The Bullet replete with its Western-flavoured mid-song twist.
Lead single Saturday Night (Hallelujah) set the tone some time ago and the party-starting fist-pumper was a worthy Red Hot Track Of The Week back in May.
But who knew that ripper of a tune would be backed up by a slew of equally catchy classics?
And that’s the thing with Eclipse.
Mårtensson and Henriksson have always had a happy knack of grabbing the attention early doors.
You don’t need to listen to Wired twice to realise it’s a record of the year contender.
You rarely need to listen beyond the first chorus to know the band’s just nailed another earworm of a track.
And you never ever play an Eclipse album once, never to revisit it again.
Six years after Armageddonize snuck inside our 2015 Top 10 we’re still playing the shit out of that stunning masterwork.
And we’ll be plugged in to Wired long after Eclipse release their next record…and the one after that.