Dare - Calm Before The Storm 2

Calm Before The Storm 2
Dare was formed in 1985 by Darren Wharton after Thin Lizzy had broken up. The band released a couple of really fine albums namely “Out of The Silence” and “Blood From Stone” that successfully mixed hard rock and melodic sensibilities that were met with quite a bit of success, both in the charts and on the stage both in the UK as well as overseas. However, as the music business is a fickle business, is a fickle beast the were still dropped by their record company only to be picked up by the middle weight MTM company (R.I.P.) in a partnership that saw as its first fruits the release of the original “Calm Before The Storm” back in 1998. Now there was nothing principally wrong with that album, it had some fine crafted songs and a really nice cover of Thin Lizzy’s “Still In Love With You” as a fitting tribute to Philo. But coming on the heels of two really finely produced and stronger sounding records, and being a little calmer and a little less proficiently mixed stole away a bit of its thunder. From that point onwards Dare, with the very beautiful “Belief” and the albums that followed it took a great departure from hard rock, turning into a heavily Celtic influenced folk rock band that sometimes would remember the hard rock roots, which is not necessarily a bad thing.
So, by re-recording this album with the current lineup, Darren Wharton, is not really trying to “cheapen” the original or to buy time until a new album as the “demographic” for Dare is what it is anyway. I guess, he’s purely and artistically trying to bridge the discography properly and right a wrong, fix a slight anomaly, now that he can. “Calm Before the Storm 2” retains the character of the original, although it sort of mellows it a notch down, to match the style of the later works, but it’s also electric enough to look up to the bands earliest works, thus I think perfectly bridging the gap. I’d hate to think of a “Blood from Stone 2” – don’t just don’t! It shuffles the tracklist and adds 2 new songs as well “Precious” which I think features Daz’s son Paris on guitars as well as another couple of songs and “Cold Wind Will Blow”. Gone is the beautiful Lizzy cover (dunno why?).
But at any rate, with songs like “Walk on the Water”, “Someday” (what an epic song!) “Calm Before The Song”, “Rescue Me”… even the new songs “Precious” and “Cold Wind Will Blow” are really perfect and really sound amazing and “fit” really well sequenced in this new way, in this re-arranged track-listing! I raise my cup, to those who don’t need a reason, to the Vagabonds, the Kings, the Warriors and the Angels.