Magnum – Here Comes The Rain

7/10

This is probably the hardest review I have written so far, because how do you write a fair review when the brain behind the album passed away less than a week before the album is released? As you probably know this is what happened with the new, maybe the last, studio album from Magnum. Band leader, composer and guitarist Tony Clarkin unexpected passed at just 77 years old, only five days before the release of “Here Comes the Rain”.  You want to celebrate the man and you want to praise the album, but you also must be honest and give your true opinion of the music, no matter what…

Like I stated before, I have been a big fan of Magnum since their amazing first album “Kingdom of Madness” from 1978. But I lost interest in the band after their four first excellent albums and didn’t regain it again until the release of the fantastic “Princess Alice and the Broken Arrow”. Since then, I have loved every release by Magnum.

So, the expectations were very high when “Here Comes the Rain” was announced. I ordered the box set that included a double colored vinyl, the double CD (including one live CD), a live DVD and some other stuff. The wonderful artwork is by the great Rodney Mathews, something that I missed from the last release, “The Monster Roars”.

What about the music? I will start by stating that this is a good album and that I like it, but it’s not a great album or an amazing album. For me it was a bit of a disappointment, but as I said, still a good album that I enjoy listening to. It’s just that I’m used to a higher standard from Magnum.

Let’s go through the songs one by one, and maybe you will understand my point of view better.

The album kicks off with “Run into the Shadows”, one the best tracks of the album. A classic Magnum song. I really like it, so there are no complaints here.

“Here comes the Rain” is a slower more atmospheric song that I also really like, except maybe that the refrain is a bit boring. Still a great song.

“Some Kind of Treachery” is almost a kind of power ballad, and I’m not a fan of any kind of ballads. Still, it’s very atmospheric and an ok track…

“After the Silence” is a great song with a good refrain, now I recognize the band. Also, one of my favorite tracks from the album, classic Magnum.

“Blue Tango”, the first song I heard from “Here Comes the Rain” as it was released before the album. Sorry, but I didn’t like it then and I don’t like it now, to much rock’n’roll for my taste.

“The Day He Lied” is also classic Magnum, very atmospheric and suggestive. I especially like the piano piece that leads into the main theme in the last third of the song.

“The Seventh Darkness” is another song that I don’t like. Well, it’s actually a pretty good song, but I hate the horns. They totally destroy the song for me. But I must admit that the duel between the guitar and the sax in the solo part are very good, but I don’t want that in a Magnum song.

“Broken City” ok, this is not bad, but it’s to slow and boring, however the harp (is it a harp?) is lovely.

“I Wanna Live” is once again classic Magnum with some great bass from Dennis Ward. The epic instrumental piece at the end of the song is fantastic. One of the best tracks of the album.

“Borderline” is at 6:15 the longest track and a great ending for the album. Bombastic with classic Magnum vocal melodies. Also, one of the best tracks on the album.

So, why don’t I think that this is a great or an amazing Magnum album? Well, when I listen through the whole album, and I have done that several times a day since the release, I find that it lacks a bit of energy and there are no standout tracks as good as the ones on the last nine studio albums. I would have liked a couple of up-tempo tracks, no horns and no rock’n’roll for it to reach the level of greatness. But it is a good album and I have listened to it quite a bit and will continue to do so.

Some final thoughts on Magnum’s future. A lot of people think that this is it and that the band should break up now that Tony Clarkin is no longer with us. I, on the other hand, think that they should continue. At least if that is what they want to do. At least for a final tour so that these songs get to shine live as well as on record. It will be a great and well-deserved tribute to Tony Clarkin. I don’t see no reason for them not to go on as a live band, if that is what they want. Magnum’s great music need to live on, not just on records and streaming but also on a stage near you. So even if the king is dead, the band can live on.
Long live Magnum!

Artist: Magnum

Title: Here Comes the Rain

Label: Steamhammer

Date of release: 12/1-2024

Time: 50.15

Rating: 7/10

Standout track: Run into the Shadows, Here comes the rain, After the silence, The Day he lied, I wanna live,  Borderline

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Magnum – Here Comes The Rain

January 26, 2024

You want to celebrate the man and you want to praise the album, but you also must be honest and give your true opinion of the music, no matter what…

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