PAIN OF SALVATION — Road Salt One

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PAIN OF SALVATION - Road Salt One cover
3.50 | 49 ratings | 7 reviews
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Album · 2010

Tracklist

1. No Way (5:28)
2. She Likes To Hide (2:57)
3. Sisters (6:15)
4. Of Dust (2:32)
5. Tell Me You Don't Know (2:42)
6. Sleeping Under The Stars (3:35)
7. Darkness Of Mine (4:17)
8. Linoleum (4:55)
9. Curiosity (3:33)
10. Where It Hurts (4:51)
11. Road Salt (3:00)
12. Innocence (7:15)

Total Time: 52:00


Ltd. Edition (55:33):

1. What She Means To Me (0:51) *
2. No Way (extended version) (7:08) *
3. She Likes To Hide (2:57)
4. Sisters (6:15)
5. Of Dust (2:32)
6. Tell Me You Don't Know (2:42)
7. Sleeping Under The Stars (3:35)
8. Darkness Of Mine (4:17)
9. Linoleum (4:55)
10. Curiosity (3:33)
11. Where It Hurts (4:51)
12. Road Salt (extended version) (04:38) *
13. Innocence (7:14)

* Bonus Track / Special Extended Version

Line-up/Musicians

- Daniel Gildenlöw / vocals, guitar
- Johan Hallgren / guitar, vocals
- Leo Margarit / drums, vocals
- Fredrik Hermansson / keyboards, vocals

About this release

Release date: May 12, 2010
Label: InsideOut Records

InsideOut CD #IOMLTDCD 329
InsideOut VINYL #IOMLP 329

Thanks to [email protected] for the addition and J-Man, Unitron, diamondblack for the updates

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PAIN OF SALVATION ROAD SALT ONE reviews

Specialists/collaborators reviews

The Crow
After the confusing and too experimental BE and the directly horrendous Scarsick, Pain of Salvation (or Daniel Gildenlow) returned to a better path with Road Salt One!

But fans of the older material of the band be aware, this is not a return to their roots. Some trademarks of Pain of Salvation are here, like some syncopated rhythms, a pair of polyphonic vocals and a bit o prog (No Way, Innocence), but the album is mainly blues-rock influenced by acts like Link Wray or Robin Trower with some experiments like cabaret music (Sleeping Under the Stars) and a pair of ballads (Sisters, Road Salt)

And another curious fact that this album has is some different singing of Daniel. I don't know if this man lost his voice or he just uses it differently here... But I think he shouts too much. It's even a bit unpleasant sometimes.

Nevertheless, the album has enough good moments to be considered a return to form for the band after some obscure years following the release of the grandiloquent (and maybe best work of the band) Remedy Lane.

Best Tracks: No Way (cool blues melody with a surprising instrumental interlude), Sisters (pure Pain of Salvation magic, melancholic and touching), Darkness of Mine (dark, like its title), Linoleum (will please old fans of the band) and Road Salt (truly beautiful singing here and great lyrics)

Conclusion: Road Salt One supposed a return to form for a band which lost its way with BE and Scarsick. Nevertheless, die-hard fans of the old Pain of Salvation albums will maybe also dislike this one, because it's not prog, and it's not metal.

It's another experiment of Gildenlow with new sounds for the band in the form of blues, soul, cabaret and country. It's not overall excellent, but good enough to be considered a worthy addition to the band's discography.

My rating: ***
The Angry Scotsman
A blues influenced, jam oriented rock album with a raw, "vintage" sound. What's not to like?

Well at first listen, a lot. Such a cool idea, and admittedly a cool sounding album, but was just...not that good. Though if there's one thing I've learned from post-Remedy Lane PoS, it's that patience is key. Sure enough, with time and listens this album grew on me, (though the seeds were already there) and while it's certainly not as strong as their "classic" albums, or even their previous 2...it is a decent album.

I gave kudos to PoS for changing it up and doing what they want. While different, "BE" was a dense, pretentious prog rock album and "Scarsick" was prog metal..."Road Salt One" however is something that truly flies in the face of PoS fans. As mentioned, this is a blues rock album, with little prog, (and less metal) to be found, and the band even took an unpolished, raw sound to make it feel vintage. If this sounds out of your league best avoid RS1 entirely. I like it personally. Like any radical change it did take some getting used to, and outside the feel I really didn't like the music much.

While it's much "simpler" as in there's less complex, progressive songs...replaced with more direct, "stripped down" ones it is challenging instead that it's a subtle album, (much like Scarsick). Not to mention a challenge to prog/metal fans! The music can at times be a bit repetitive and drab, but generally it gradually moves...building to powerful climaxes. The writing is subtle and keyboards are more prominent than previous albums, even if its often gentle.

As always, the music takes a back seat to Gildenlöw's vocals, whose powerful, emotional singing truly dominates this album, ranging from soft cries to powerful wails and loaded with the emotion and nuance that needs no explanation to any PoS fan. His singing really carries the album, though of course the music is not to be forgotten about.

More of an "album experience" rather than individual songs, though some do standout like the powerful opener "No Way". This is followed by the good "She Likes to Hide" and the more mellow "Sisters" which is not a bad song but one of the weaker. "Of Dust" is a choir segue which brings us to the middle of RS1 which is absolutely the strongest part.

"Tell Me You Don't Know" is a real cool, blues heavy song and the next 3 are more progressive songs, punctuated by "Sleeping Under the Stars" and "Linoleum" two awesome songs and the latter being my favorite on the album.

"Sleeping Under the Stars" has a circus type jig and gets kind of weird in the middle, in a great way, and has some humor, best seen in the line "Wait darling wait, you're the sh*t as they say in...where they say at...wherever they say that" ha! While "Linoleum" is just a damn awesome, heavy, proggy rock song.

"Curiosity" is another progressive song, notably more up beat while "Where it Hurts" is another mellow one that peaks and valleys. "Road Salt" is a vocal driven, light keyboard song before the finale "Innocence". A 7 minute song that is like a wrap up of the album, progressing through light, psychedelic sections and loud, heavy sections.

So, overall this is a good album. Certainly takes some getting used to and patience, but is worth it. Musically not the mot technical and complex thing made, even by the band, but instead it focuses on subtle songwriting and compositions that rise and fall, taking us on an emotional rollercoaster. The raw, blues rock sound is really cool and Gildenlöw's singing is, as always, some of the best. It fits the feel of this album even more than ever, and shows why he is one of the top vocalists out there. Some parts drag and are a bit drab, and isn't an anytime listen but a good album nonetheless, and I applaud PoS for doing what they want and challenging the fans.

Three Stars

The Block
Originally I was vey hyped for this album. I had just gotten into Pain of salvation the summer before it came out and I was ready for another masterpiece. When it came out I was severely disappointed. But, as time went on I began to realize that even though it is far from their best work it is still a very good album. Also what I noticed was that like BE it is very different from traditional metal. Or even prog metal.

The songs on this album are relatively short, compared to many of their other albums. One thing that is different is that they are lacking the huge middle solos and extended instrumental parts in their songs. Most of the time Daniel Gildenlow is singing which is a much different way then most of their other stuff.

The first time I began to see some of the brilliance, if you could call it that, behind the songs was in "No Way" and "She Likes to Hide". I like these songs because they are very bass driven and have a good feel to them that makes you get into the music. Also many of the songs are dark and mostly evil sounding. One that is different is "Sleeping Under the Stars" which is a very weird song. Unlike the other songs it has a much more upbeat tome to it and even has a little of a circus theme song to it. Pain of Salvation also uses a lot of disharmony in the song which counter-acts the happy feel in it. One thing that is odd about it is that the lyrics don't really make sense. At one point they are talking about semen stains, and then all of a sudden they are singing about sleeping under stars.

Other good songs on it include "Linoleum" off of their EP Linoleum, "Darkness of Mine, and "Innocence". This blend of songs and, of course, the masterfulness of Daniel Gildenlow’s lyrics, plus the great musical skills of the whole band make this album worth 3.5 stars.
Phonebook Eater
One of the most attended albums of 2010 in the mind of a progressive fan was Pain Of Salvation's new album, since the bit disappointing "Scarsick". Boy, this was hard to digest. I really was bummed when I heard this album for the first time: they completely changed sound, sounding more like a blues/country rock band, with some original moments here and there. Now, I realize that the band never felt like they needed to label themselves, so they felt free to go another way, to experiment, using less experimentation than ever. Despite this, and despite not being really prog (or metal), this is a good album, seen badly by most of this site.

Twelve songs: the same as The Perfect Element, Pain Of Salvation's magnum opus and one of the best prog metal albums of all time. But "Road Salt One" is everything but "TPE": all the songs are quite simple, like a normal rock song, almost all of them short. Also the structure of the album, unlike TPE, obviously doesn't make you wanna listen to the whole thing, since it looks like just a really normal album.

Certainly, the good songs are present: "She Likes To Hide" is a great blues/ ballad song, with some psychedelic tones, "Sisters" ,very gloomy and melancholic, but very beautiful, "Of Dust", a mournful song played only with organ and vocals, "Darkness Of Mine" has a great catchy chorus, "Linoleum" a very rockish mood, with a chorus that quite reminds me of their previous album, "Scarsick", the melancholic, calm "Road Salt", a beautiful piece of music. However, some songs are forgettable and frankly quite annoying, like the opening track "No Way", or the joyous "Sleeping Under The Stars".

In conclusion, I've heard better PoS albums, but I respect this choice they made, which was to try to change their style a (huge) bit. It could have been better, but still not bad. 4 stars.

Members reviews

Earendil
Road Salt One sounds like Pain of Salvation had the idea of doing a stripped-down, non-metal song, did a couple demos, and just went with the best version. Then, they repeated this process until they had enough music to fill an album. Welcome to Road Salt One, a concept album where half of the songs are explicitly about sex and the other half are about a girl. I found nothing unifying about the album to warrant it a concept album unless it was how every song sounded like part of the same underdeveloped demo, which is not exactly something to strive for. Overall, some credit must be given because this album is indeed unique, but it fails to deliver at all musically.

Rating: 3/10
ProgSphere
Pain of Salvation’s new child, Road Salt One is surely one of those albums that has been received and still is receiving many divided opinions. I suppose it’s along way from being their best, but I still absolutely love it. Some people complained about Pain of Salvation’s mainman’s eccentric philosophizing more than the music itself, but afterall that’s not what we should care about. As a huge fan of Pain of Salvation during the years, I’ve learned to carry on with Daniel’s experimenting and getting into new stuff and new mood changes.

Passing that way from being synonymous act in progressive metal community to, I’ll quote, “a band which desperately tries to get into mainstream”, Pain of Salvation, or Daniel Gildenlow if you like, is a man who doesn’t make any kind of concessions, at least when we talk about music and it’s probably a key factor for surviving in music business.

I’m kinda astonished by fact that someone could expect another Remedy Lane or The Perfect Element I record and that someone still didn’t learn the lesson of Pain of Salvation further progress and experimentation, which actually started with their first album Entropia, and got emphasized with BE, back in 2004. What’s it that separates this album from its predecessors? The answer could be simple. It’s nothing and everything. The 70’s psychedelic edge that clearly shows off from Road Salt One is pretty much intentional thing and there are few reasons for that. One of them was Daniel’s idea to create “70’s on steroids” record. The other is its recording and production, which is “clear” to fit with the psychedelic statement from above.

But still, Pain of Salvation with this record doesn’t reject their entire epochal monument, built up on its multicolourness, this is cut of their career so far, just a logical sequence of circumstances. It’s funny that the same destiny has been received for latest albums of Porcupine Tree and Opeth, but the time has proved again to be a significant factor in the comprehension of an artistic expression. You can’t simply be sure of what this album brings, it’s an eclectic journey consisted of classic rocking in No Way, bluesy thread in She Likes to Hide, the all beauty Sisters carries, the BE-ish atmosphere in Of Dust, the simplicity shaped in Tell Me You Don’t Know, the hidden treasures of cabaretish Sleeping Under the Stars, lullabyish Darkness of Mine, the grunge bits of Linoleum, punk-rockish Curiosity, the darkness of Where It Hurts, the pureness in Road Salt and heaviness of Innocence, in that particular order.

The musicianship on this record is simply with no mistakes. The improvement is most evident in Daniel’s vocals, who this time pulled out his best of the best to make such a brilliant vocal harmonies and certainly should be considered as one of the best vocal performers out there in today’s scene. I would like to point out especially keyboards, which bring new dimension in Pain of Salvation structure, with the presence of some of the classiest 70’s sound.

Lyrically, Road Salt One is a conceptual work, but different from all previous records, as it deals with few parallel stories. I can’t be sure what Daniel has had on his mind while writing these stories on the album, you’ll have an opportunity to read his words in an interview we’ve been completing with him, so if he’s of good will, he will say his secrets about its expressions.

I guess that this review is protectionally disposed, but I have to underline that I’m not noone’s protector here nor I have any profit from this, but finding this album very good and worthy of giving a chance made me probably speaks in this direction.

To conclude, Road Salt One maybe is not their best release out to date, but for sure it’s worth of every spent penny, as it DOES have some very interesting, nice, classic, feel-free-to-describe-it-for-yourself work and it certainly belongs to HUGE and divers Pain of Salvation opus. Still remains to hear how the second part will sound, so we can have, hopefully, a positive image of salted roads.
Kilgannon
For some reason I have decided to review the Pain of Salvation (PoS) discography in reverse.

In my opinion to review the works of a band such as PoS you must, to some extent, try and refrain from referencing their previous releases. My point here is that as PoS are a band that consistently and intentionally alter their style with each release, it is unfair to say that "X is better than Y" etc. So whilst you can say that you do not like one of their albums, it is my opinion, that another of their releases cannot be used as a benchmark.

With Road Salt One we are introduced to the first part of two of the Road Salt duology/dilogy. This album feels like it is, without detracting from the music and talent, a 'barebones' recording from the band.

The overall sound of this album is that of a 70's blues-y release, the guitars are mellow and the drums are succinct. At times, especially within "Sleeping Under The Stars", the album has a very Eastern-European feel to it.

I would say that I was misled with the "Linoleum" EP. The title track from that release does not particularly, I think, sound like the rest of the album at all. Having said that, I love the album.

In most cases it sounds to me as though Daniel Gildenlow's voice leads the way and shapes the song, whilst the [other] instruments weave and fluctuate around him. I have seen elsewhere Gildenlow mention that they were trying to create the "jam session" sound and I believe that shines through in all the songs.

Whilst this album doesn't contain many sounds similar to previous PoS releases: there are no real solos to speak of, the songs are at a much slower pace, and is generally much less "heavy"; it is in that sense uniquely a PoS release. There is no escaping the diversity and fluctuation that is inherent within there style, not only this but the wide vocal range and emotion of Gildenlow's voice is very distinctive.

Listening to this album you will not be provided with the complexity of PoS's other works, the songs are short (on average) and do not have as many phases as you may have come to expect. But it is a whole-band experience for the entirety of each song and just because their are not as many passages within each song does not mean the talent of each member goes unnoticed.

You will have to go into this album open-minded and, should you have a diverse enough range of tastes, will be pleasantly surprised at yet another turn down another road in the PoS journey.

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