Album Reviews

Dare – Calm Before the Storm 2 Review

Released by: Legend Records

Release Date: October 8th, 2012

Genre: AOR/Melodic Rock



Line Up:

Darren Wharton

Richard Dews

Kevin Whitehead

Marc Roberts



1. Walk On The Water

2. Someday

3. Calm Before The Storm

4. Crown Of Thorns

5. Precious

6. Silence Of Your Head

7. Rescue Me

8. Ashes

9. Rising Sun

10. Cold Wind Will Blow

11. Deliverance


Darren Wharton the head master behind the AOR/Melodic Rock outfit Dare delivered gently and with cool aptitude his melodic stamp on the world of AOR back with is outstanding debut record “Out of the Silence”. Almost 10 years later the former Thin Lizzy keyboard player completed the third Dare album titled “Calm Before the Storm” and even though the music was more laid back and melodic then their debut, it was still received very well in the AOR circles.  Needless to say sometimes re-recordings can be a hit or miss thing, but with Darren still having a strong voice, and a tight band backing him up there is not worry here for a letdown as the guitars are simply majestic.

Calm Before The Storm II is Dare’s seventh studio album and 10 years to the date of the original recording. The order of the tracks on the new recording is a little different and so it’s the cover art, well somewhat if you remember the original one had a picture of a girl walking towards the sunset, it seems that girl has grown up a bit and turns herself into an exhibitionist….nice eye candy guys but it’s the music worthy of your wallet?

For the most part YES is a nice job of listening to this more polished versions of the classics, and Darren Wharton’s voice is still as good as ever. His influenced Celtic tones give the music a nice added element of mysticism similar to when Gary Moore payed homage to his motherland. The opener “Walk on Water” churns with a melodic emphasis and groove, as well as the title track which solidifies the sound of the record. The great number of “Crown of Thorns” is one of my favorites as it’s more fast pace Hard Rock vibe adds a nice rocking spark to the album, and it sounds even better performed this time around. “Rescue Me” keeps it’s focus on mid level pace with a nice job of the guitars smooth solos keeping the rush of groove in top notch, Wharton’s voice is particularly high rising and deliberate on this number. The same style of moody and anthem like choruses keep the flow of the record flowing with invigorating feel when you get to the excellent tune “Rising Sun”.

I’m not normally always on ship with re-recordings of records especially ones that have been marked as classic in their own genres, and Dare’s Calm Before the Storm is one of those alongside Out of the Silence, but since the production is pretty good on this version and the band sounds great still to this day, I will let it slide and recommend it to fans of the original who may have missed it’s special quality the first time around. If you’re an AOR fan then you should already be checking this one out as you will no doubt still enjoy this side of things some 10 years later.


Written by Denys

Ratings    Denys    8/10

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