(8/10) Imagine the picture of a cabin at the riverside, you’re sitting there on a rocking chair, watching the sunset with a cold glass of beer in your hand, reflecting on your life. This is what I was thinking while listening to Zakk Wylde’s newest acoustic release “Book of Shadows II”.
Men can‘t show emotions – says who? This album confirms that even tough guys like guitar wizard Wylde can show a lot of emotions, embedded in soulful tunes on the newest longplayer. Maybe you even have to be strong to also reveal your inner soul.
As mentioned in the title, it is Wylde’s second album, showing the master of mighty riffs from a different angle. “Book of Shadows II” is a melancholic and melodic journey that puts a spell on you.
Each of the fourteen songs is a highlight. It is the mixture of Wylde’s gentle guitar sound, the silent booming Hammond in the background, the guitarist’s iconic voice and the warm sound of the album that makes this "Book of Shadows II" to a special one. A tune that reflects all this in perfection is “Sleeping Dogs” that is for me one of the best numbers on the album.
A song that gives you the shivers is the closer called “The King”. The level of sadness this song spread is so intense, emphasized by the clever usage of a Hammond organ and some cello moments. You don’t want to be king after having heard this song.
Of course it’s not only the end of the album that sounds good. Actually I could have picked each of the 14 tracks. The bluesy “Tears of December”, the intense “Darkest Hour” or the rocking “Eyes of Burden”, all good tracks that you should listen to rather than reading about them.
“Book of Shadows II” is the second leg of Wylde’s acoustic journey, a trip that hopefully will continue with a few more stages in the coming years.
- Autumn Changes
- Tears of December
- Lay Me Down
- Lost Prayer
- Darkest Hour
- The Levee
- Eyes of Burden
- Forgotten Memory
- Yesterday's Tears
- Harbors of Pity
- Sorrowed Regret
- Useless Apologies
- Sleeping Dogs
- The King
Label: Spinefarm Records
Release Date EU: April 8th, 2016