Risen From Ruins are a hard rock band from the UK, mainly made up of different generations of the Jervis family. There is Ian Jervis (lead vocals & guitar), Lisa Jervis (keyboards & backing vocals), Ed Jervis (guitar & backing vocals), Danielle Jervis (bass) and Tom Brookes (drums). Their sound takes its starting point from classic hard rock and then adds touches of progressive rock and metal to the mix.
They formed in 2008 and finally released their debut full-length album ‘You Are far More Powerful Than You Have Been led To Believe! in the summer of 2011. They state “We desperately wanted to produce something that was a reflection of the band, that gave insight into who we are and what we are about, and just as importantly we wanted to release a quality recording. We have a loyalty to our friends, to those who support us and have done for the past three and a half years, we wanted to give them something that is worth their effort to buy and listen to”. The producer was Shaun Lowe at Prism Studios in Stoke on Trent.
Starting with an atmospheric jumble of voices that are just out of earshot, the guitar eases into view and takes on a mid-paced rhythm. This is a progressive tour-de-force as besides loud riffing, they allow spaces for Tom’s technical drumming and Lisa’s ethereal vocals and lush keyboard. “I can feel your eyes burning right through me / Burning to my soul / I can feel your words cutting right through me / Cut me to the bone / I can feel your fire, yeah it consumes me / Falling down on me / I can feel your breath powering through me / Makes me feel alive”.
‘A Place Called Eden’ has some thunderous rock guitar and gives equal emphasis to Ian and Lisa’s vocals. Then ‘Breathe’ treads the rock ballad route using quiet parts with vocal harmonies “You always have something to think about / there’s always a problem to figure out / And time, it flies and passes you by / So come outside and breathe”.
One of my personal favourites is the stunning worship song “HalleuYah” which makes the hairs stand up on the back of my neck. “It all comes crashing down / there’s chaos all around, but I see you / Stars are falling down, but my soul is safe and sound”. It recognises that whilst we may face crushing moments of despair in our lives, there is a God that cares for us. The strength of this track comes from the pure heartfelt passion that is expressed.
After a gentle keyboard and sparse guitar intro, there is monumental riffage, rumbling bass and symphonic keyboard in ‘Shadows Of Doubt’. It also uses some harsher backing vocals to great effect. Lisa stated “It’s when you feel like the world, including those who you thought were your friends, kick you down ….. and then when you’re down, they kick you some more! Until you find yourself in a place where you wonder “whats the point” you feel like it’s all over, and you don’t have any motivation or energy or reason left to carry on. So in desperation you get on your knees and scream out to God -” HELP ME! CHANGE MY LIFE OR I’M DONE!” The point is, no matter how low you hit, you somehow find hope, even if it’s the tiniest glimmer, it’s there, and thats how powerful hope is. Sometimes we see hope as a little, weak, “maybe” but in fact it carries more power than anything in the world, because it remains even when it looks like all is lost and it’s usually the only thing we are left with and when we take hold of it we find a way through our dark hour.”
They follow on with the slow-burning ‘Flying High’ with its blistering fretwork. This is counter pointed by the reflective ballad ‘One Moment’ and the powerful romance in ‘Beautiful’. But then ‘A Chance To Kill’ thunders in with barely suppressed rage “A chance to kill is a chance to cure / A chance to hurt is a chance to love / There’s no more reason for you to hide / You’ve seen the truth from deep inside / This chance tonight is a chance for you”. Finally there is the acoustic guitar led ‘Alive Again’ which reprises the opening track, but with a reflective mood.
Reviewed by Peter John Willoughby
02. A Place Called Eden
05. Shadows Of Doubt
06. Flying High
07. One Moment
09. A Chance To Kill
10. Alive Again
Label: Thus! records / 2011
Lisa Jervis- Vocals & Keys
Ian Jervis- Vocals & guitar
Ed Jervis- Lead Guitar and backing Vocals
Danielle Jervis – Bass
Tom Brookes – Drums