Released: 2006, Frontiers Records/Zink Music
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall
German singer Oliver Hartmann is back with his second solo album, the follow up to the 2004 debut OUT IN THE COLD that’s already been reviewed on metal-rules.com. If the debut album was light melodic hard rock/rock, then this new opus can be filed in the melodic rock genre. HOME contains 11 pretty strong songs and feels a little more solid when compared to the debut. There’s a larger variety of musical influences and the album draws from both sharper melodic rock items to heavy and beautiful ballads. It seems that the lyrical theme of love has tagged along from the debut album, which makes the album a little too predictable. HOME also feels a little too long; the songs can’t hold my attention for the 50 minutes the albums lasts.
Hartmann produced the album with Sascha Paeth, and they have managed to create an environment which sounds just as it should when it comes to this kind of music. Hartmann’s lead vocals are, of course, the main focus, and it’s not a bad move because the man has an amazing voice that really stands out.
I’m not too convinced by HOME, but Hartmann has managed to create an OK album despite the love theme and the many ballads. It doesn’t feel like this is the direction a singer of Hartmann’s caliber ought to take. I really hope that he can outshine this album with his next one. He still has some things to work on, and I’ll give this album a mid-rating because of his amazing voice, love for the music, and solid musicians; not for the songs. The album’s golden moments are in the melodic rock songs like “The Sun’s Still Rising”, “Just for You”, “Higher than Me”, and “Millionaire”.