Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Pretty Maids-It Comes Alive

Frontiers Records

Leading off your first ever live CD/DVD with an Obama sample is not the best way to hook me or get my interest peaked. It is a lucky thing then that these Danish melodic hard rockers kick things off in such grand fashion with the excellent “Pandemonium”. Despite the melodic keyboards the track (which by the way was the title track from their last album released in 2010) plows through the audience and right out of speakers with that familiar sound that has always made the Pretty Maids a secret favorite of mine. Pretty Maids was formed in 1981 by vocalist Ronnie Atkins and guitarist Ken Hammer and have built up a solid career for themselves with their take on melodic metal. Really the band relies on melodic keyboards as much as they do classic hard rock/heavy metal guitar riffs and since they have the ability to craft catchy, hook-laden numbers with flash and style they have managed to have a solid fan base in place. Since Pretty Maids are celebrating their 30th anniversary as a band with this release I'd wager hardcore fans will swoop this up as soon as it hits the stores. The set-list here covers quite a bit of the Pretty Maids career. You get great live covers of "Queen Of Dreams" from the group's full-length 1984 debut album, "Red, Hot and Heavy" as well as numbers like "Future World" (from the album of the same name) and "Rock The House" from "Jump The Gun". All in all this CD does a nice job of showing Pretty Maids for who they are and that is melodic metal masters. Live the band sounds just like the great melodic heavy metal act that they presented to the masses in the studio. Having the material sound as good as when it was originally laid to vinyl is not an easy task. As said this is a must-own for fans of the group as it offers a glimpse of just how good these underrated Danish musicians are.


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