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MIRROR QUEEN (From Earth Below) CD

Spawned from the demise of New York's heavy rockers, Kreisor, MIRROR QUEEN are a new band and 'From Earth Below' is their debut full-length, released by Tee Pee Records in April 2011. Since I personally never heard of Kreisor, I can't draw comparisons between both bands but that is not necessarily compulsory. It is clear that MIRROR QUEEN love 1970's rock, not only because of the great cover version of Captain Beyond's 'Mesmerization Eclipse'. The album is complemented by an underlying space rock edge that evokes memories of late 1970s Hawkwind, but also Pink Floyd left its mark on a very few songs. However, that does not mean that MIRROR QUEEN are part in this ever growing retro rock scene. It's more that they have created a timeless heavy sound which also incorporates elements of newer bands such as Valis or Santeria.

All in all, a good mixture of influences, executed with finesse, strong musicianship, and feeling. Another plus are the good vocals of guitarist Kenny Kreisor, which leads to the fact that most of the ten tracks have a nice recall value. However, 'From Earth Below' is a partially enjoyable experience for me. Despite some infectious riffs, powerful chops and more than a few tasty hooks, this album is so safe, stylistically speaking, that it will quickly send me scurrying back to my favourites. It would be fine if they'd make just a little more effort to blend the brew from which they were birthed with some more personality of their own. And I think it's not sufficient to have a talented singer in the lineup. Don't get me wrong, 'From Earth Below' is not a bad album and songs as, for example, 'On Dark Ships', 'Mindworm' and 'The Mirror Queen part 2' are very well-done. In all other respects, however, most of the tracks are not above-average. Technically, a strong debut but they still need to work on creating a distinctive personality.