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Album Reviews : Treat – Coup de Grace

By on April 9, 2010

Treat_coupdegrace240The older metal heads and rockers out there may well remember a Swedish band going by the name of Treat from the 80s, when hair metal was at it’s climatic point of glory, and the grunge revolution was still only an idea formulated in garages around Seattle. The younger crew may have heard of Treat from more recent times, after they reunited in 2006 with their comeback album Weapons of Choice, having broken up in 1993. It’s not an easy thing for a band to rise up from the ashes of their own glory and try to reach that high point again, and given the current trends in metal, it would be wrong to suggest that Treat can do that. But I was surprised at how damn close the band have come with their new album Coup De Grace.

Given the title and artwork, I was expecting a concept album concerning itself with the art of war, and the opening intro did little to make me believe otherwise. Quotes and speeches from modern history have been clipped together with an epic orchestral background, with inclusions from Winston Churchill, Martin Luther King and various radio presenters reporting on the wars and tragedies of the past century. But the concept goes no further than this, and a lot of the other tracks on the album are more reminiscent of hair metal’s glory days, concerning rock, girls and love.

Whilst the band have retained their hair metal attitude, the sound has been merged with European melodic rock that reminds me of bands such as Gotthard, whilst the obvious influences such as Motley Crue and WASP are there.Roar and We Own the Night are two of the greater highlights of the album. The previous is a provocative song with powerful lyrics that shout “Ready to Roar!“, whilst the latter is not so hard rocking, but it has a fast paced rhythm and some beautiful, graceful guitar overlying it.

It wouldn’t be a Treat album without some beautiful acoustic ballads, and A Life to Die For fulfils this well, with some well placed lead guitar weaving it’s way amongst the acoustic guitar making it even more enchanting. My only real dispute with the album is that I was hoping for a conclusion as strong as the introduction, but the final track Breathless didn’t come close to fulfilling that hope.

This isn’t the album that will herald the return to the glory days of hair metal, but it does prove that it can still kick arse in a metal environment very different to that of the 80s. This album lives up to its name as being a Coup de Grace. Buggered if I know what it translates to, but the album is gracefully pulled off with stylish precision.

8/10

Band: Treat
Album:
Coup De Grace
Year:
2010
Genre:
Glam/Melodic Metal
Label:
Universal Records
Origin:
Stockholm, Sweden
http://www.treatnews.com

Tracklisting:

Prelude – Coup de Grace
The War Is Over
All In
Paper Tiger
Roar
A Life To Die For
Tangled Up
Skies of Mongolian
Heaven Can Wait
I’m Not Runnin’
No Way Without You
We Own The Night
All For Love
Breathless

About

Mitch Booth is the owner, designer and grand overlord of Metal Obsession. In the few seconds of spare time he has outside of this site, he also hosts a metal radio show over on PBS 106.7fm in Melbourne (Australia) and organises shows under the name Untitled Touring. You should follow him on Twitter.