Hot off the Press

Jorn | Symphonic

by Nikiforos Skoumas
– Columnist —

JornIt would be fair to say that Jorn’s role in rock/metal is a rather an unusual one. Despite various high-profile collaborations that often found the singer fronting a band on a full-time basis, his solo works have drawn similar or greater attention from the international audience. Beyond original studio albums, Jorn has released a tribute album, a best-of collection, two live albums and most recently an orchestral album.

Symphonic collects songs from Jorn’s five previous studio albums, complemented by the orchestral arrangements of Lasse Jensen and remixed by renowned melodic metal producer Tommy Hansen. It has to be mentioned that, beyond Jorn’s original studio tracks, Symphonic features three covers; “Rock and Roll Children,” originally by Dio and “The Mob Rules” by Black Sabbath (neither featured on Jorn’s Dio tribute album). The third cover is the title track from Masterplan’s latest album “Time to be King.”

Of course, the question in one’s mind is, “How relevant is an album of remixed-orchestral versions of Jorn songs,” especially considering that most of the tunes have been around for less than a decade, with their original versions still sounding very fresh. Well, to his credit, Jorn included a rather extensive foreword in the album booklet in which he uncovers the reasons for marketing such a release, but, more importantly, he debates the relevance of this album in his own words: “It can be discussed whether it was necessary or not to release an album like this, since the songs also sound great without the added orchestral arrangements …”

On the other hand, one cannot overlook the fact that Jorn masterfully has chosen his lesser-known songs. You could even use the term “fillers” for some, which nevertheless seem to take lives of their own in the process. “I came to rock,” “The world I see,” “Man of the Dark” and “My Road” work perfectly with the classical arrangements. Still, the album’s strongest moments can be found in “Rock and Roll Children!”

Genre: Heavy Rock, Symphonic Metal

Line up:
Jorn Lande – vocals
Willy Bendiksen – drums
Nic Angileri – bass
Tore Moren – guitars
Jimmy Iversen – guitars

Track list:
1. I Came To Rock
2. Rock And Roll Children
3. The World I See
4. Burn Your Flame
5. Man Of The Dark
6. My Road
7. Time To Be King
8. Black Morning
9. Like Stone In Water
10. Vision Eyes
11. War Of The World
12. Behind The Clown
13. A Thousand Cuts
14. The Mob Rules

Label: Frontiers Records

Hardrockhaven rating: 7/10