Review: “XVIII” by Eighteen Visions

Its been nearly a decade after Eighteen Visions went their separate ways and vocalist James Hart started hard rock outfit Burn Halo. In 2013 original bassist Mick Morris passed away leaving for many fans the possibility that Eighteen Visions would not return, despite having played around with some material in 2012. So when teaser videos started appearing on line followed by a music video in which former Evergreen Terrace and current Stick To Your Guns guitarist Josh James appeared, fans were expectant. While Josh James doesn’t appear on the album itself, he has subsequently been announced as a full time member of the band, while remaining in STYG. Eighteen Visions began a style change with “Obsession” that suprised many fans but for the most part brought decent results. Then they dropped their self titled release that as a real departure and more of a debut for the forthcoming Burn Halo project than an Eighteen Visions album. So with this new release a decade on, what style so we have?

The answer to that is that we have an old school Eighteen Visions album. Something that follows on from “Vanity” really well. James Hart is on top form both lyrically and vocally with Ken Floyd’s crushing guitars tearing through opener “Crucified”. As each subsequent song appears there is an expectancy of something more melodic appearing but as we move through the album this doesn’t appear. Yes there are some more melodic elements within a couple of the songs but these are broken into and out of by crushing guitar work and gutteral unclean vocals. It’s as if a time capsule was invented. “Live Again” strikes this balance well and is a fitting tribute to Mick Morris. As with the older albums there are old film sample intros “I came to chew bubblegum and kick some ass” from 1988 John Carpenter classic “They Live” that takes us into “Underneath My Gun” which are a fine move.  “The Disease, The Decline and Wasted Time” came from the aforementioned 2012 sessions but fits perfectly with the newer material. “Oath” and “Spit” are both classy songs and while the album is kept shirt and sweet, it’s a fine display of the band on top form and something that all of the old school original Eighteen Visions fans will love [5]

Eighteen Visions will be in the UK for 3 dates in November

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