ALLEN/LANDE - The Great Divide (Review)

information persons: 
Produced By: 
Timo Tolkki / Mixed: Dennis Ward
Running Time: 
Release Date: 
Musical Style: 
Melodic Metal
Friday, November 28, 2014
A new Allen/Lande release without mastermind Magnus Karlsson involved? Not sure about that. Timo Tolkki to take over as chief architect? Definitely know how I feel about that.
I came into this release – the 4th overall – with very low expectations. After Timo’s recent twin Avalon releases, I expected a bad production and some bland songwriting.
But I was wrong and I’m happy to announce that.
While I don’t think the album has the same wall of sound that Karlsson delivered or the same intensity in the vocals, it is still pretty good.
Interestingly, 6 of the 10 tracks feature just the one vocalist. Jorn on 3 and Russell on 3. Just 4 of the songs feature both vocalists and that’s a weakness of the album and shows how well Karlsson worked with both singers on all songs and intertwined their vocals on the first 3 records.
Thankfully the production is far better than the Avalon releases, with Dennis Ward brought in to mix the end results.
Anything featuring Russell Allen and Jorn Lande in full attack mode is going to appeal, so I’m glad everyone involved got it right.
Timo is responsible for writing all songs – with Jorn co-writing several with him. Timo is also responsible for the guitars, bass and keyboards. So it’s an impressive performance here and I’ll now expect more from him.
After 3 pretty similar releases (which I all rate highly), perhaps it is nice to hear these class vocalists at it once again, but with a different sound behind them.
The strong opener Come Dream With Me and the belting impact of the fast moving Down From The Mountain (both tracks featuring duel vocals) and In The Hands Of Time (featuring Russell) get the album off to the best possible start, with both singers in full fight.
It’s not until the quality metal ballad Lady Of Winter (featuring Jorn alone) do things slow down a little.
Dream Until Tomorrow is a song featuring both singers belting it out and is followed by another duet in the intense Hymn For The Fallen.

Russell closes the album with a pair of songs – one highly quality rocker and the other a powerful metal ballad called Bittersweet.


As much as I like the results here, I still haven’t played the album as much as I did the first three. I think the sonic impact of Magnus Kalrsson is the obvious missing ingredient here, plus the lack of interplay between vocalists, but otherwise, Timo far exceeded my expectations and this is still an enjoyable melodic metal / hard rock album worth of the Allen/Lande name.



ALLEN LANDE 'Bitter Sweet (Official Lyric Video)'

Wednesday, November 5, 2014
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'Bitter Sweet (Official Lyric Video)'


Taken from "The Great Divide" - Available NOW

ALLEN/LANDE - The Great Divide (Pre-View)

Friday, September 5, 2014
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Russell Allen and Jorn Lande team for their forth partnership with the album The Great Divide.
To be honest, I wasn’t looking forward to this, even with the first three albums from the duo all ranking highly in my reviews and my great fondness for mastermind/songwriter/guitarist/producer Magnus Karlsson.
One reason is because Magnus is not involved in this at all. And secondly because taking over from him is Timo Tolkki, who has recently delivered two poorly received Avalon projects, both falling short with production as well as song writing.
Now I don’t have the writing credits for this album yet, but I do know that Timo produced and mixed it and he’s on the way to redeeming himself.
Despite missing that full frontal audio assault that Magnus gives us with his guitars and production, The Great Divide still manages to pack a good punch thanks to a tight Dennis Ward mix.
It’s well produced and is almost as heavy as its predecessors. Guitars still rule the day.
Vocally the album is every bit as impressive as Jorn and Russell deliver their usually high standard in vocals. There is less interplay between the two singers overall, but it’s great to hear both singing quality material with gusto.
Timo also delivers in the songwriting department. There’s some great melodic metal gems here.
You’ve already heard the opening track Come Dream With Me (, and some additional snippets via
That track is a pretty good indication of what’s to come on the record. There is some blistering rockers in Dream About Tomorrow, In The Hands Of Time and The Hymn To The Fallen.
Mid-tempo ear rattlers like Lady Of Winter and Solid Ground show off the guys at their very best and then there’s a huge metal ballad to close the album Bitter Sweet.
So lots to look forward to here. I’m going to spend some additional time with it before my final review, but initial fears have certainly been laid to rest.
The album is out October 17 in Europe and October 21 in North America. Pre-order from Amazon:

RUSSELL ALLEN / JORN LANDE Return With “The Great Divide” in October

Friday, October 17, 2014
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Jorn Lande and Russell Allen return with 4th ALLEN LANDE masterpiece “The Great Divide” in October
Production and songwriting by former Stratovarius mastermind, Timo Tolkki
                Frontiers Music Srl is pleased to announce the release of the anticipated fourth album from ALLEN / LANDE, the vocal alliance between Norwegian Jorn Lande and powerhouse Symphony X / Adrenaline Mob vocalist Russell Allen entitled “The Great Divide” on October 17th in Europe and October 21st in North America.
                Following three successful albums written, played and produced by Magnus Karlsson (of Primal Fear/Starbreaker), the new album “The Great Divide” offers a substantial change in that former Stratovarius guitarist and main composer, Timo Tolkki took on the challenge to write and produce the new recording. Tolkki also performs all instrumentation on the album except for drums, which are handled by Jami Huovinen.
                Work on the album started in late 2013 when the first songs were demoed and sent to the two singers, who loved the direction of the new music. Also, for the first time, Jorn Lande has contributed vocal melodies and lyrics to the album. The final result is certainly outstanding and the crisp mixes from Dennis Ward (PC 69, Place Vendome, Unisonic) have delivered an amazing sounding album. Stunning cover art created by French artist Stan Decker completes the package of the most eagerly anticipated Melodic Metal release of 2014!
                The opening track from the album, “Come Dream With Me”, is available for streaming via Soundcloud via this link: and a 3-song trailer is available on Youtube via this link:  Two more songs from the album will be unveiled in the coming weeks prior to the album’s release.
                “The Great Divide” tracklisting includes the following songs: Come Dream With Me; Down From The Mountain; In The Hands Of Time; Solid Ground; Lady Of Winter; Dream About Tomorrow; Hymn To The Fallen; The Great Divide; Reaching For The Stars; Bittersweet.
Fans can pre-order the album now on here:
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