Classic rock with metal influence mixed in
After seven years, the hard rock band British Lion has come out with a solid second album. With the guidance of Steve Harris (bassist and main songwriter for the well-known heavy metal band Iron Maiden), the band has produced an hour-long record (The Burning) that is rock to the bone with metal influences and vibes throughout.
While Harris was more at the forefront of British Lions, the group’s first release, The Burning is a proper British Lion album and the band members and Harris play off each other well. Compared to the 2012 release, this album feels more composed and coherent. Right from the beginning, “City of Fallen Angels,” the opening track, exudes classic rock and David Hawkins’ guitar playing makes it feel like no time has gone by; it’s entertaining and the solo at the end is solid.
On tracks such as “Spit Fire” and “Lightning,” which are at the middle and the end of the album, Harris’ influences are clear as these are full-on metal tracks. Also, being surrounded by songs that are of a slower tempo like “Legend” and “Elysium” makes them stand out more. The time and effort put in by all members bleed through. While the album is solid overall, it does suffer from feeling a bit repetitive which comes from the tone being the same across the 11 tracks. If people were also expecting Harris to deviate from what he usually does with Iron Maiden, they won’t find what they were looking for. The album sounds familiar and will bring nostalgia, but it does not defy gravity.
Even though The Burning does not go outside the box, it will cause Iron Maiden fans and rock fans to nod along for the full hour. Each track will ignite a spark of recognition and enjoyment, and people can appreciate the talent each member brings to the table. So, if listeners just want a solid rock album this will satisfy their need and we will have to see what British Lion does next.