Royal Hunt - ‘Show Me How To Live’
André Andersen - Keyboards
D.C. Cooper - Vocals
Allan Sørensen - Drums
Andreas Passmark - Bass
Jonas Larsen - Guitars
Michelle Raitzin (guest vocals on “Another Man Down”,
1.) “One More Day” - This track opens with a battle scene. That includes horses, swords fights, and off in the distance you can hear cannon fire. As the fight progresses an eight-note orchestration arrangement begins. As the orchestration progresses the band intensify the music by adding instrumentations that are more classical. To make this intense sound André slowly turned the channel on the mixing board up. This causes the sound to slowly get louder and more intense sounding. This was very simple yet effect studio trick. On the third musical measure, André keeps the keyboard rhythm only he changes keys. For the fourth measure, André begins playing a second rhythm with his left hand. As the intensity builds, Allan begins playing a sixteenth-note double bass drum rhythm. Fourth or fifth measure (hell I’ve done lost count) the backup singers begin to sing the same rhythm as the right handed keyboard rhythm. This entire section almost has a Catholic Church feel to it. Everyone should keep in mind this is still just the into. As the backing vocals continue André Andersen slowly changes the keyboard arrangement. There is a short snare fill to connect the musical intro with the musical verse. As the musical verse progresses the band add more and more notes causing the musical verse to build with intensity. To connect the musical intro with the musical verse André changes the keyboard arrangement. Allan plays several cymbal chokes underneath this rhythm. There is a small drum solo connecting this second or third if your keeping count to the musical verse. For the lyrical, verse DC double-tracked the second and fourth lyric line. As the chorus kicks-in, the song gets more and more intense. The backing vocals in conjunction with the bass drum kicks make the verse, and CD worth buying!!!!!! The lead guitar solo is after the third chorus and was a tin lead guitar solo. Maybe one of the best progressive songs I’ve heard in a very long time!!!!!
2.) “Another Man Down” - HOLY SH*T what a duet!!!!!!!
3.) “An Empty Shell” -It sounds as if André and Allan are playing sixteenth notes on the Keyboards and drums. Over the top of sixteenth-note snare/bass drum pattern Allan overdubbed a percussion pattern. A small build-up drum fill leads to a DC Cooper vocal accent. After the vocal scream instead of changing the musical arrangement, Allan changes the drum line from a tom-tom pattern to a ride cymbal/double bass drum rhythm. There is a small musical build-up along with a drum fill that connects this intro with the musical verse. The band used the same musical arrangement change for the musical verse as the one they used for the intro. For the musical verse the only change is the drum line switches from a tom-tom pattern to a standard progressive drum line. The actual musical change is not until the musical chorus. Vocally this track really shows how great DC’s vocal ability is. After the second chorus there is a keyboard solo. The keyboard solo leads to a blistering guitar solo.
4.) “Hard Rain's Coming” - Very well could be the best progressive song I have ever heard!!!!!
5.) “Half Past Loneliness” - This intro opens with a bass/drum line. On the second measure, André kicks-in the keyboard arrangement. Jonas kicks the guitar arrangement in next. The way they layered the instruments one over a top of another gave the intro a great sound. There is a minor lead guitar solo connecting the musical intro with the musical verse. For the musical verse, André overdubbed two different keyboard arrangements. At times it sounds as if DC double-tracked his lead vocals for the vocal lines of the verse. There is an arrangement change for the musical chorus. The vocal lines of the chorus give it a very sweet hook. There is a minor lead guitar solo connecting the first chorus with the second verse. For the second pre-chorus DC changes the melody just a little giving it a very nice hook. Leading into the end of the solo the Allan intensifies the rhythm with a very intense double-bass drum rhythm change. After the solo, there is a drastic musical change for the breakdown section. The breakdown section consisted André playing keyboard arrangement underneath DC’s lead vocals. The thing with progressive music is you never really know what to expect this breakdown is one of those times. The grand piano André used for the breakdown along with the speed change came right out of left field! As the breakdown progresses André composed a small fill-in orchestrated arrangement to give the breakdown a little more body. Jonas played several lead guitar licks over the top of the outro.
6.) “Show Me How To Live” - This track opens with a studio effect consisting of rain. Over the top of the rain, there was another studio effect however, it was very difficult to tell what it was. The musical intro opens with a piano arrangement over the top of the rain. About a measure into the intro there is a string arrangement that kicks-in over the top of the piano arrangement. The band used the same piano & string arrangement for the verse as the one for the intro section. At times, it sounded like DC double-tracked some of the lyric lines. Underneath the musical arrangement of the verse Allan plays a tom-tom pattern. Though there is an arrangement change for the musical chorus it is by far DC’s vocals that make the choruses. There is a minor lead guitar solo connecting the first chorus with the second verse. There is a second minor solo connecting the second chorus with the third verse. After the third chorus there is a small musical rest that consisted of a DC lead vocal line. These vocal lines where done with an echo. As the vocal lines progresses André starts playing a small-orchestrated keyboard arrangement. This leads into a string arrangement. This arrangement leads to a piano solo. At the tail end of the piano arrangement, there is a backing vocal over the top of it. This leads into the lead guitar solo. For the lead guitar solo Allan overdubbed sections of it to give it a twin lead guitar solo. There is a minor solo over the top of the outro.
7.) “Angel's Gone” – This track opens with a small keyboard arrangement over the top of a floor-tom pattern. After the first measure there is a huge tom-tom fill. The second measure is the same as the first except the second tom-tom fill consisted of several cymbal crashes. Over the top of the drum line of the next measure Allan plays several cymbal chokes. After the third measure Allan changes the drum line from a tom-tom rhythm to a standard ride cymbal rhythm. For the main body of the intro there is an amazing keyboard arrangement. More than likely since André composed the musical arrangement he probably also composed the minor lead guitar solo. The minor solo connects the intro to the musical verse. The last two lyrics o the opening verse was done with an underlining backing harmony sang by Maria McTurk and Alexzandra Popova. Though there is a rhythm change or the musical it’s the double bass drum rhythm that catches your ears. There is a lead guitar solo connecting the second & third chorus. There is a small backing harmony over the top of the tail end of the solo.
Formed in 1989, ‘Show Me How To Live’ is Royal Hunt’s eleventh release. One word comes to mind when I think of this release and that is amazing!