HAREM SCAREM — Mood Swings

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HAREM SCAREM - Mood Swings cover
4.39 | 6 ratings | 1 review
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Album · 1993

Filed under Hard Rock


1. Saviors Never Cry (4:03)
2. No Justice (4:36)
3. Stranger Than Love (3:58)
4. Change Comes Around (5:02)
5. Jealousy (4:10)
6. Sentimental Blvd. (4:23)
7. Mandy (1:56)
8. Empty Promises (4:19)
9. If There Was A Time (4:57)
10. Just Like I Planned (3:20)
11. Had Enough (3:56)

Total Time: 44:44


- Harry Hess / Lead vocals, guitar, keyboards
- Pete Lesperance / Lead guitar, backing vocals
- Mike Gionet / Bass, backing vocals.
- Darren Smith / Drums, backing vocals

About this release

Released by Warner Music.

Thanks to Lynx33 for the updates


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Specialists/collaborators reviews

It's more mature than "New Jersey" by Bon Jovi. It's got more power than White Lion but it's not bad boy like "Whitesnake" or "Slip of the Tongue" by Whitesnake. At times, it has the fun and vocal feel of Sammy Hagar Van Halen but is usually more serious like White Wolf. Then there's that great guitar playing of 1987-1992 glam metal / hard rock, which reminds me of "III Sides to Every Story" by Extreme. Pete Lesperance has picked up some of the best guitar licks from those years and created some excellent guitar tracks, both riff and lead, for this album.

"Mood Swings" is the second official release by melodic hard rockers Harem Scarem. The first two tracks "Saviors Never Cry" and "No Justice" deliver the best of the band's hard and heavy guitar rock with powerhouse vocals. Whether it's Harry Hess' vein-bursting, rough-edged power vocals or the chorus vocals with the full band, the vocal department fully keeps up with the guitar and the solid rhythm section. Though I became disenchanted with this style of production, which I claimed was over-produced loudness, in the late eighties, the production on this 1992 release makes the music work as it is. Someone learned something in the early nineties.

Curiously, when I first heard this album, I was at times reminded of early Dream Theater, which incorporated a lot of melodic glam metal vocal melodies. If DT had dropped the prog side the music might have shown some similarities. Or if Harem Scarem had gone prog!

Well, I mentioned the first two songs but the whole album is a ride of heavy rockin' guitar with some great licks and strong melodies. The band sometimes leans more to the grittier side but swings back to melodic choruses. Two tracks that are different from the rest of the album are the short instrumental "Mandy" which features Lesperance's melodic lead guitar abilities and "Just Like I Planned" which is an a Capella track. The latter I feel loses some of what it promises due to the loud production. They could have eased back a bit and brought out the vocal harmonies better. It's also worthy of mentioning "Jealousy" because they go for that clean bluesy guitar sound like on late Stevie Ray Vaughn albums but don't go blues. Hess proves to have such a strong voice that it's possible to imagine him singing soul funk or contemporary blues.

I'll admit this is an album to listen to when you're in the mood. I held off on reviewing it for weeks but today it just sounds right. For fans of this style, it's easily four stars. Great musicians and vocals, powerful and melodic music, a band that really has it together.

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  • dream_salvation
  • Pelata
  • jsorigar
  • Lynx33
  • jose carlos

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