Reviewed by Mike Rimmer
Luna Halo were part of the new wave of American Christian rock bands who debuted at the beginning of the new millennium and promised so much. (Remember The Elms and Earthsuit?) Their debut album 'Shimmer' promised a great deal but when they parted ways with their Christian label and decided to go into the mainstream, it seemed that they had lost momentum. With only a couple of independently released EPs in the last eight years, it's been hard to keep the flame alive yet it's the strength of their musical ability that means that this self-titled new album delivers everything you ever hoped Luna Halo might do! Basically it's been eight years but it's been worth the wait. These days only singer Nathan Barlow remains from the outfit that recorded the debut album so with the passage of time and personnel it's no wonder that stylistically things have changed. Mind you, for most people, this will be like discovering a new band and they are worth discovering. Now signed to Rick Rubin's American label, you'll have to hunt this CD down, but go and do it. . . now! Why? Because it's packed full of punchy powerful catchy rock reminiscent of bands like The Killers and Franz Ferdinand. Gone are the attempts at U2 or Radiohead-style atmospherics and instead you get meaty, bouncy rock'n'roll with the hookiest of choruses piled on top of swathes of guitars and driving rhythms! Favourites for me include the jerky, jumpy, riffy "Untouchable" and the immensity of "Medicate". If you're looking for direct preachy lyrics, forget it but if you're searching for intelligent thought provoking lyrics that'll have you thinking, then this is it! Oh yeah, and did I mention that Nathan Barlow's singing is better than ever? Such passion, such drive, such emotion! I suspect that even in the mainstream, American doesn't have the marketing dollar to really break the band Stateside which is a shame as it seems this fine album will remain an underrated treasure.
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