Released by: Frontiers Records
Release Date: December 5th, 2014
Genre: Melodic Rock
Harry Hess: Lead and backup Vocals/Keys
Pete Lesperance: Guitars/Bass/Keys
Creighton Doane: Drums
Darren Smith: Backup Vocals
Garden of Eden
Early Warning Signs
The Midnight Hours
Whatever It Takes
Saints and Sinners
All I Need
Never Say Never
Garden of Eden (Acoustic Version)
My intense love of Harem Scarem is no secret. I have reviewed a few of their albums over the years, and can’t think of a time I was ever disappointed by their music. In fact, the only time they have ever bummed me out was during their down times, especially when it looked like they were calling it quits in 2008. Luckily enough for me and the rest of their devoted fans, they came back with some new tracks on the 2013 re-recording of their classic album Mood Swings (entitled Mood Swings II of course) sounding better than ever. Then the glorious news was announced that they were releasing a brand new album, and speaking for myself I was ecstatic at this revelation.
If you don’t know who Harem Scarem is (I’m sorry,) they are a Canadian band that specializes in some of the best AOR hard rock music out there. The fact that they aren’t worldwide mega-superstars is a crying shame (and something to the effect that I have said in about every review I have done for them.) On their 13th album simply titled Thirteen, the band is still at the top of their game. Between the soulful rasp of singer Harry Hess and the magnificent fret work of Pete Lesperance you have a duo powerhouse seemingly without any loss for writing some brilliant songs. From the catchy to poignant, tracks like “The Midnight Hours” “Saints and Sinners,” “Garden of Eden,” “Whatever It Takes,” “Never Say Never,” and “Troubled Times” are instant classics. To hear how fresh this album sounds it’s like the time away rejuvenated them.
I am not ashamed to admit that I am a huge Harem Scarem fan. They have released some albums that have made major impacts on my life. I wish the world shared my opinion as well, as these guys are high on my list of bands that are so much more deserving of the spotlight than most of those in it. Thirteen from start to finish is absolutely stellar and exactly what the fans of their music have come to love and appreciate from them.
Written by Chris Martin