February 28, 2023

Joining the category of ‘Melodic Rock Bands from Sweden’ which must surely be one of the longest lists in the world is the AOR band Creye with their third album entitled III Weightless which follows on, rather logically, from II which came out in 2021.

The band has a wonderful typically mature melodic delivery built upon superb hook laden songs with sumptuous vocal harmonies, simply perfect instrumentation and stunning vocals in that most pleasing Swedish meets American trans-Atlantic delivery. The music is very much of the ’80s AOR movement but all refreshed for today’s market with the emphasis being on stadium rock epics with tracks such as Stay having radio smash hit written all over it. All that Creye need is a little radio play and I’m sure they will be picked up all over Europe and America.

The band was put together in 2015 by the lead guitarist and songwriter Andreas Gullstrand and there was something of a revamp after the debut album including a change in singer but this new album sees the same team as on II with August Rauer on lead vocals, Fredrik Joakimsson on rhythm guitar, Joel Selsfors on keyboards, Gustaf Örsta on bass and Arvid Filipsson on drums. They are another band that has mastered the art of delivering up-beat and highly addictive 4-minute rock/pop classics in the same way that bands like Asia did back in those halcyon days and you cannot help but sit back and admire the precision, skill and, yes, love which has gone into this recording with each track immediately feeling like an old favourite with the songs staying in your memory for a long time afterwards. Andreas Gullstrand is a wonderful guitarist who lays down plenty of killer solos and all are in keeping with the tone of the songs so they are fluid and searing but without excess or overindulgence and Fredrik Joakimsson gives great support with his precision rhythm guitar making for a full and expansive sound. Joel Selsfors supplies neat and luscious keyboards throughout with Örsta and Filipsson being a hard-working rhythm section with a real rapport between them that drives each song onwards and upwards. Special praise must be given to the vocals of August Rauer which are clear, sweet and perfectly controlled and delivered with a typical ‘American’ flavour’ which should stand the band in good stead on the other side of the Atlantic.

The band switch from stadium rock to slow, burning ballads with ease making this latest album a thrilling and most pleasing release. Creye offers up timeless AOR which is highly recommended to fans of bands like H.E.A.T., Europe, Danger Danger, Toto and Cheap Trick, top class.

III – Weightless

  1. Glorious (4:08)
  2. Air (3:39)
  3. One Step Away (3:40)
  4. The Game (3:01)
  5. Spreading Fire (4:03)
  6. Weightless (3:37)
  7. How Far (3:47)
  8. In The Shadows (4:08)
  9. Stay (4:07)
  10. Dangerous (3:32)
  11. Pieces (3:02)

III – Weightless is out now on Frontiers Records