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Jorn - 'Live In Black' (frontiers records) 4.5/5

Norwegian metal master Jørn Lande is a busy bugger. Not only is he working his nuts off with Masterplan and Allen Lande; guesting on albums by Avantasia, Push king and ex Uriah Heep keys wizard Ken Hensley; performing in rock operas AND organizing Ronnie James Dio tributes, but he can still find time to record and tour with his own solo project Jorn. And it's with Jorn that this his latest release comes. Live In Black, is of course a double live CD set, recorded at last years Sweden Rocks festival and comes with a DVD to accompany the live audio albums (sadly the DVD was not issued in the promo package I received so I'll leave that out of this review).

Now it is my sad duty to report that I'm not 100% up to speed on this guys career, all I've heard is the odd Masterplan track and a few tracks off his Ken Hensley collaboration; and I'm now beginning to wonder what I have been missing, cos I'm liking what I'm hearing here very muchly. Not only does Mr Jørn sound uncannily like the late great Ronnie James Dio in his vocal inflection, range and delivery, whilst his band comes over like a glorious mixture of Dio, Tony Martin era Sabbath and Accept with a hint of the Judas Priests thrown in as well. In short, all the great metal stuff that provided the sound track to my youth. The overall result is a live album that easily stands alongside the likes of Live Evil, Live After Death and the other great metal live albums of years gone by.

Highlights? Well the power wail of Stormcrow is spine tingling, the relentless plod and pound of Spirit Black is truly epic, the riffing on Man Of the Dark is to die for and Soul of The Wind has just gotta be a true metal classic. Hell I'm not normally one who cares too much for cover versions, but there's a version of Thin Lizzy's Are You Ready on here that can only be described as a belter.

I'm now gonna go off and track down the rest of this guys stuff and I'll advise anyone with a taste for good old school metal to buy this album, and do the same.

For fans of.. Dio, Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Helloween etc...

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