Threshold - Legends Of The Shires

Threshold - Legends Of The Shires

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(CD/LP, Nuclear Blast, 2017)

When it was first announced that Damian Wilson left and original vocalist Glynn Morgan took over, people sure had mixed feelings. But if I remember correctly, it was exactly the same when Damian came back in 2007. For me, I didn't really know what to think. It was Damian that got me hooked on THRESHOLD with a mind-blowing performance on one of those crazy 24-hour cruises (read; Boozeroo's) between Sweden and Finland in 2007 or so. After that, everything worked!

In the beginning, “Legends Of The Shires” did not appeal to me - I missed something that got me hooked like “Watchtower Of The Moon” or “Turned To Dust” did when digging into “For The Journey”, so frankly, this new one felt a little flat in comparison. Of course, it's not as easy to have striking chorus-lines when delivering a concept album (but it can't be a fantasy story coming from THRESHOLD, can it?). But the more it played, more details crystallized and bits and pieces started to come together. A little funny perhaps is that both massive epics “The Man Who Saw Through Time” and “Lost In Translation” were the first ones to stick. I really like the dynamics and flow in these songs. It's impressive what THRESHOLD have done here, to keep it interesting from start to finish with different passages but still keep the songs cohesive.

“Stars And Satellites” is a fine example of the dynamics and fines the band possesses. Damian was phenomenal at delivering emotion with his voice and his nerve and feeling was really outstanding. I think this why I was most hesitant with; if Glynn Morgan would manage to keep this up. The more the record spins the more he comes through and I miss Damian less and less. Just listen to the chorus-line in this one and the PINK FLOYD-esque passage which follows. It sure sounds awesome. Another favorite from this ambitious double record (82 minutes in total) is lightweight “Snowblind”; soft and smooth in the sense that it doesn't have that very low distorted guitar very prominent in THRESHOLD's sound and a very sticky melody. I haven't gotten the opportunity to get into the story fully, according to the short narration it's about a society or a person trying to figure out their place in this world, which sounds very much like something THRESHOLD would do.

As I said, “Lost In Translation” was one of the first things that got stuck and has remained a favorite onwards. The changes between raw and technical and the super-smooth chorus-line are fantastic. Even if this is a slow and heavy one, it holds great intensity and intriguing melodies and harmonies. It sure is extraordinary 10+ minutes this one.

It took a while to get this one to settle, I don't deny that. But it is a fantastic piece of music, ambitions yes. And the length might work against it for new listeners as it is a lot to take in. It doesn't feel long though and that has to count for something.





01. The Shire (Part 1)
02. Small Dark Lines
03. The Man Who Saw Through Time
04. Trust The Process
05. Stars And Satellites
06. On The Edge
07. The Shire (Part 2)
08. Snowblind
09. Subliminal Freeways
10. State Of Independence
11. Superior Machine
12. The Shire (Part 3)
13. Lost In Translation
14. Swallowed


Glynn Morgan - Vocals
Karl Groom - Guitars
Steve Anderson - Bass
Richard West - Keyboards
Johanne James - Drums