Steve Harris / British Lion

British Lion

British Lion is the debut solo album from Steve Harris, best known as the bassist and primary songwriter for the British heavy metal band Iron Maiden. The album was announced on 18 July 2012 and released on 24 September.

The Analysis—-

This Is My God—-A few things come to mind as soon as you press play on this release…..this is NOT Iron Maiden, this lacks the trademark Bass lines from Harris…..the vocal has a blues tinge to it…and lastly, this is cliche’ 80’s sounding Metal. Not to imply that these are bad observations, just noting that this seems a bit lackluster and uninspired from the very start. The vocal is acceptable…but the range is not shown. Towards the end of the track, you do hear some familiar bass work……but this lacks that special something.

Lost Worlds—-Packing  a bit more musical energy at the onset, the vocal enters and is delivered with the same predictable range as the prior track. This has a meatier sound…a bass crunch if you will…but it all seems a bit pretentious….as if Harris concluded that if Bruce can do solo stuff than so can I.

Karma Killer—-A really nice musical energy kicks off this track….the lead guitars never overshadowed by the bass line that lies in the background of the song. I wish we could get a bit of a vocal dissonance from this band….but the monotone vocal delivery stays in tact. This guy would be better off with an Alternative style band than a Metal band.

Us Against The World—-At the onset this track is cloaked in a mysterious sound…..the music opens up and ebbs and flows to allow for the mundane vocal. The music at times DOES have a Maiden flair…but this lacks inspiration because of the lackluster vocal. I just can’t get past the uninspiring sound of it all.

The Chosen Ones—-Really nice and metallic at the onset, this actually has some really nice energy going on here. The vocal is a bit more acceptable….it has an almost processed sound. The music saves this track…the energy and the almost wall of sound is fantastic. I rather like this song…a huge catchy chorus as well…..

A World Without Heaven—-Again, musically this track is pretty awesome…I like the retro 80’s sound of the band. The vocal enters and dashes my hopes for a song as great as the previous. This is just a boring singer….no histrionics or vocal range leaves me rather empty.

Judas—-Nice Harris bass line and some great drums usher in this track, but everything goes silent to allow for the vocal….I had such high hopes for this release but it really fell on deaf ears…including mine. The saving grace for this track is the rather catchy chorus…..really nice.

Eyes Of The Young—-This has a really contagious melody lie running through the underbelly of the song. The Harris bass line is there…but never overstated or overblown. The band all seem to get equal bearing on this release. This has a fantastic chorus…even if the vocal is exactly as everything we have heard up to now.

These Are The Hands—-Huge drums and instrumentation bring this track to life. There are actually some vocal variances on this track…a huge and welcome surprise…but you can tell from the vocal that the singer strains to even reach for other than mid range vocals. This is a letdown…but a damn catchy melody saves this from complete ruin.

The Lesson—-Closing out this release, I must admit I’m not sorry to see this almost piece of rubbish end and go back to sleep. The track is the typical requisite ballad sounding track that is standard. The vocal is flat and uninspired, while the music is almost to quiet. There are some beautiful strings on this track….but that is all the good I can add.

* out of 5


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