On Rock (Collectors’ Edition)
Artist: Daniel Band
Label: Retroactive Records
One of the best things about being in my forties is that my generation refuses to let anything die for good. If you liked a TV show, a band, a movie, or a toy, odds are it will be back any moment, with new packaging, bonus items, and a bunch of children that don’t understand your nostalgia fix.
If you came to the CCM world early, Daniel Band was an ubiquitous presence. Equal parts 70’s classic rock, and early Christian metal, Daniel Band was a bridge for those who wanted the hard rock sound but with positive lyrics. Their debut album, On Rock, while sounding dated twenty-eight years (is that possible?) after its release, was considered groundbreaking Christian rock.
Hearing it again conjures memories of the early MTV metal bands, but also mixes in some serious musical ability: “He’s the Creator” is a mixture of Petra and Rush, and “I’m Sorry” is the obligatory metal ballad. “Free From Sin” opens with a trademark heavy metal scream, while “It All Turns to Rain” gives us another metal standard: the extended guitar solo.
On Rock tips its hat to classic rock (Foreigner, Boston), Canadian bands (Rush, April Wine), and to early Christian metal (Rez Band, Jerusalem). While the music clearly is of a previous generation, it will bring back a lot of memories for those of a certain age, and held its own against the secular bands of the day.
Brian A. Smith