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Album Reviews : Pain of Salvation – Road Salt Two

By on November 30, 2011

Back in 2010, Pain of Salvation released the first of a two part album entitled Road Salt. Road Salt was a huge surprise to many long time fans of the band, with some fans embracing the change of direction the band had taken, and some dismissing it.

With 2011’s release of Road Salt two, fans were once again divided. Some hoped for a return to the old Pain of Salvation and some wanted the band to continue with their new sound. So what does Road Salt two sound like? Let’s just say the latter half of fans will be happy.

‘Road Salt two’ is a continuation of the raw, dirty and ‘to the point’ direction that Road Salt had. Tracks such as ‘Conditioned’, ‘Mortar Grind’ and ‘Softly She Cried’ are probably the most obvious tracks that continue the ’70’s Hard Rock’ traits of ‘Road Salt’ and even the Linoleum EP.

However, don’t expect ‘all riff and no melody’. The band still manages to sneak in moments of subtle, yet enchanting beauty. Unexpected intricate melodies pleasantly surprise you when you least expect it. The vocals of Daniel Gildenlow are once again, aggressive, raw and more powerful then ever. Moments in ‘Softly She Cried’, ‘Eleven’ and ‘To the Shoreline’ will greatly please the ears.

There are some tracks on the album that are somewhat lacking in either creativity, originality or both. ‘Conditioned’ sounds like a typical 90’s rock tune. ‘1979’ feels like a ‘be nostalgic for the sake of being nostalgic’ sort of deal and ‘Through the Distance’ (although it is a pleasant track) sounds like it was heavily influenced by Coldplay.

Road Salt two is another solid album from Pain of Salvation. Their experimentation with this new sound and style has proved successful for the band. If Road Salt two has done anything for me, it would be that it has made me hungry for their next album and sparked much personal interest as to where the band will go next.

Band: Pain of Salvation
Album: Road Salt Two
Year: 2011
Genre: Progressive rock
Label: Inside Out Music
Origin: Sweden

Track listing:
1. Road Salt Theme
2. Softly She Cries
3. Conditioned
4. Healing Now
5. To The Shoreline
6. Eleven
7. 1979
8. The Deeper Cut
9. Mortar Grind
10. Through The Distance
11. The Physics of Gridlock
12. End Credits