Burning Kingdom - 'Simplified'
Danny Vaughn - vocals
Johnny Benson - drums
Tosi Galen - bass
Manuel Seoane - guitars
Mikkel Henderson - keyboards
1.) "Watching As It Burns" -This track opens with a fairly standard melodic/hard rock intro arrangement. Over the top of the rhythm guitar Manueal double tracked a second rhythm guitar. Manueal double-tracked a minor lead guitar solo over the top of the intro section. There was a short drum fill connecting the musical intro with the musical verse. The rhythm guitar change underneath Danny's vocals had a very simple feel to it. It is hard to tell however, it sounded like Manueal also double-tracked his rhythm guitar for the musical verse. There are a couple of lyric lines were Danny goes from singing to a rising the vocal notes. This really shows Danny's vocal ability! There was a drum and bass line change for the musical chorus. The lyric lines along with Danny's vocals give the chorus a sweet hook! For the chorus the band changed the tempo to a more up-tempo rhythm. For the second chorus it sounded like Johnny used one of his cymbals in replacement for his hi-hat. It is very possible he also done this for the first chorus and I just was not paying as close of attention to the drum line. Connecting the second chorus with the lead guitar solo there was a rhythm guitar change. Manueal double-tracked two different rhythm guitar arrangements for the musical section connecting the second chorus with the lead guitar solo. For me, the solo was simple. The sound of manueal's guitar made the lead solo!
2.) "From On High" - This pre-intro opens with a rhythm guitar arrangement over the top of tom-tom fills along with cymbal crashes. There is a keyboard effect over the top of the rhythm guitar that connects the pre-intro with the main intro section. Underneath the keyboard and rhythm guitar there was a snare drum fill. This little connecting arrangement is the type of arrangements you would hear Aldo Nova writing. There was a rhythm guitar change for the musical verse. The rhythm guitar that Manueal wrote for the musical verse matched Danny's lyric lines perfectly. There was a small drum fill connecting the musical verse with the musical chorus. Danny double-tracked his vocals for the musical chorus. There was a huge musical and vocal hook of the chorus. After the first chorus there was a breakdown section that was reminiscent of something you would have heard Styx write in the seventies. The choruses of this song are just amazing. The lead guitar solo connected the third chorus with a breakdown section. After the chorus there is a second breakdown section. Over the top of the music arrangement of this breakdown are two spoken vocal sections one a top of the other. The spoken vocal underneath sounds like a news report. This breakdown section lead to a second breakdown section. For the coda Johnny switched from a single bass drum pattern to a double bass drum pattern.
3.) "That’s My Boogie" -This was just a very simple straightforward rock song.
4.) "The One that Almost Got Away" - The intro to this track reminded me of early Ratt. The rhythm guitar of the musical verse consisted of several musical rests letting the bass & drum line become the main instrumentation underneath Danny's vocals. There was a rhythm guitar change for the musical pre-chorus. The pre-chorus could have very well been a Danny Vaughn solo song. The band kept the chorus very basic. There was a little keyboard solo connecting the second and third chorus. There was a melodic lead guitar solo connecting the third and fourth choruses.
5.) "We Are A Wall" - The intro to this track opens with a drum fill. There was a minor lead guitar solo over the top of this heavy influenced eighties intro arrangement. It sounded like the minor solo was double tracked with several minor lead guitar licks. The last lyric of each lyric line of the musical verse was double-tracked. The verse as a whole had an unbelievable hook attached to it. There was a rhythm change for the chorus. The chorus was very short and simple. There was a lead guitar lick connecting the first chorus with the second verse. The lead guitar solo opened with a pick effect. After the short solo there was a breakdown section.
6.) "I Will Fight No More Forever" - This was an amazing ballad!!!
7.) "Falling Down" -This track opens with a rhythm guitar riff underneath Danny Vaughn singing. After four measures the rest of the band kicks-in. At this point Manueal overdubbed a second rhythm guitar arrangement. This arrangement is different that the first. In many ways the rhythm guitar along with the way the lyric arrangement is arranged reminded me of early eighties Rick Springfield. There was a rhythm change for the musical chorus. As a drummer, I loved the pattern Johnny played on his ride cymbal. For the second verse there was a drastic change with the addition of an acoustic guitar. The acoustic guitar became the main base of the second musical verse. There are little electric riffs over the top of the acoustic guitar arrangement. I was not expecting this. The chorus after the second verse was HUGE!!! The lead guitar solo connected the second and third choruses. The solo was very short. After the third chorus there was a breakdown section.
8.) "Killing Time" -For me, the only thing I heard was Danny's huge vocals!9.) "Skeleton Tribe" - Compared to the rest of the songs on this release this one, though good, was the worst one on the release.
10.) "Simplified" - This was a simple yet an amazing sounding song.
This is the third release guitarist Manueal Seoane has released under the moniker of Burning Kingdom. For this release, Manueal hired an all-new line-up that included current Bia Bang drummer Johnny Benson along with one of the top five current melodic rock voices in vocalist Danny Vaughn (Waysted, Tyketto). Manueal Seoane and Danny Vaughn wrote all ten songs on the release. Because Danny co-wrote the CD alot of the songs vocally have a Danny Vaughn solo sound. This in combination of great music writing makes for an unbelievable sounding CD! This is an absolute must own CD and well worth paying the import price!