The Early Years | review

The early Harem Scarem demos have been floating around with several different tracklistings for several years. Most of the people who have heard them have agreed that they are just too good to be left gathering dust. Now thanks to the band and Frontiers/Now & Then, they will see the light officially, remastered and repackaged. The CD even features some worthy bonustracks. As an archival release, this is one of the most worthy ones, as majority of these songs have never been released in any format. Don't know about you, but I am not that interested in listening to poor quality demos of tracks that are also available as big budget recordings, no matter how "original and raw" versions they may be.

So what do we have here? Let's take a look at the familiar stuff first..."All Over Again" and "Honestly"made it to the first HS album, while "Out Of Love" and "Whatever I Want" were covered by FIORE. "StayingAway" was featured on the "Believe" album, although this version sees Harry taking over the vocals and it also has a cool accapella intro.

"End Of Time" is marked as a bonustrack, as it is from the "Weight Of TheWorld" sessions (and featured on the Japanese version of the said album). "I Can Hear Them Now" is marked as a bonus track too, and I think it's another recent recording.

The rest of the songs are previously unreleased. Of course the production isn't up to their usual level, but the songwriting is. Some of these songs are diamonds in the rough, like the Bon Jovi-esque "Lovin' Like90", "Last Time" and "One Of The Wounded", and the HS version of "Out Of Love" is quite brilliant as well. I might add that weaker tracks than "End Of Time" made it to the european version of "Weight Of TheWorld"...

Review by Kimmo Toivonen
Originally posted at