Pretty Maids - Undress Your Madness

Pretty Maids Undress Your Madness cover
Pretty Maids
Undress Your Madness
Frontiers Music srl
Pretty Maids have been going on for the better part of forty years, almost consistently delivering worthwhile material, with a few albums even being genre classics in the hard and heavy spectrum. The release of their sixteenth (?) album is sadly overshadowed by the announcement of vocalist Ronnie Atkin’s diagnose of lung cancer. Here to hoping that he’ll be able to get treatment and gets well and back to full health. The album itself shows that the Danish Dynamites still go boom, even after all those years.
Following the rather ambient “Intro”, “Serpentine”, the lead single, is a song that’s very typical of Pretty Maids style, both melodic and catchy, with the right amount of light and shade to create drama and that fine grit in Atkin’s delivery giving it that bit more edge. Smashing.
“Firesoul Fly” is an easygoing even up-tempo soft rocker that’s quite carefree and I can’t argue with the way it makes me feel. More optimistic I suppose, even in the face of adversity.
“Undress Your Madness” has the same brooding darkness that the verses of “Serpentine” do and a chorus, that is fair, but not it’s equal.
“Will You Still Kiss Me (If I See You in Heaven)” is a heavy ballad, which feels heartfelt and because of its lyrical subject, I hope it wasn’t done after Atkins got the news of his illness. It feels bittersweet, but love I guess is something unconditional. Superb solo in there too…
“Runaway World” is a melodic mid-tempo that tries to make sense of all the daily craziness in our lives in its melancholic melodies. One of the bridges in there is actually quite amazing too prior to the solo that leads into the chorus once more. Quite cool song, cool how it unfolds.
“If You Want Peace (Prepare for War)” is a heavy and bleak song, almost lamenting how history tends to repeat itself, these days.
“Slavedriver” is an insanely hard, lyrically song, with the music also matching that mood; it’s about slavers and white supremacy and obviously it takes a critical stance, it’s actually told from a first person perspective… that of the oppressed.
“Shadowlands” is a bluesy song with some light shining on, trying to mend a broken relationship instead of ending it in bitterness and rage. I suppose with age, people mellow down… and mature, not always, but it’s nice to see how these guys have.
“Black Thunder” tries to be an anthem and it’s not as great as some of the bands bigger and better songs, but it’s probably one of the AC/Dcier “sort of” tunes. Rather monolithic and unforgiving riff wise, not exactly what I initially expected before pressing play – nice solo too.
Last but not least, “Strength of a Rose” is another sort of ballad; the first half is rather introspective, but the latter parts slowly picking up steam take a turn into a more celebratory tone…
All in all, “Undress Your Madness” is impressively solid as an album, with its minor flaws, giving it more charm, rather than taking it down. I hope that Atkins can get healthy, which is of the utmost importance and that more albums can follow, but even if this were to be the last one, it would mean going out on a very high note. Still hold on Ronnie and get back to health. Our best wishes are extended to you.