Ronnie Atkins – One Shot
Frontiers Music srl
Release Date: 12/03/2021
Running Time: 44:48
Review by Beth Jones
Do you ever find yourself pondering the finite nature of life. I do. Often. The one certainty is that, at some point, it comes to an end. This isn’t a rehearsal, and you have two choices. Drift through it, approaching everything with undue caution, or grab it by the nuts, and have fun while you can. Pretty Maids frontman, Ronnie Atkins, has certainly lived a full life, bringing sweet Rock ‘n’ Roll music to the masses for 4 decades. Our very own high lord of Ever Metal, Rick, has been a huge Pretty Maids fan since those early heady days of the 80s.
It’s fair to say that Ronnie’s been forced to do a lot of contemplating recently, too, after the devastating news that the ‘big C’ he’d battled so hard against in 2019 had come back, and was incurable. Now, for a lot of people, and certainly for me, news like this would take away any strength I had left. But not Ronnie. He’s determined to keep the nuts of life in a tight tourniquet until the end, and speak to the world, through his new solo album, “One Shot.” Lighter than the usual Pretty Maids style, Ronnie describes this album as ‘melodic rock album with a heavy twist,’ and lyrically, ‘more personal and maybe melancholic at times.’
On first listen, it truly is a great melodic rock album, complete with rock-steady beats, classic style riffs, and great vocal harmonies and guitar solos. But dig a little deeper, and it becomes all about the lyrics. It’s a bittersweet journey into the ponderings of a man’s mortality, beautifully moulded into an emotional journey of finding peace and reconciling all of life’s lessons. It reminds me, lyrically, of Queen’s “Made In Heaven” album, where Freddie explored much the same thing.
The title track of the album pretty much sums up what I’ve just said. The whole, ‘you only get one shot at life’ idea. Putting aside the emotive nature of the lyrics, knowing the backstory behind this album, it’s a stonking anthem that you could see on a stadium stage, being chorused back at the band by tens of thousands of adoring fans.
This is true of the whole album, though. Whether it’s an anthem, or a heartfelt ballad, it’s all brilliantly done, with Ronnie’s vocals taking pride of place atop the masterfully constructed melodies and orchestration of every song. It’s one of those albums that fills your entirety with happiness, and, well, life.
There isn’t anything negative about this album. It’s mixed and mastered perfectly, it’s polished, it’s passionate, it’s mature and expansive. It is what musicians spend their whole lives striving towards. Whatever musical genre you prefer, you’ll find something that connects with your soul in this album. And we all need to listen to the wisdom held within the lyrics. Thank you, Ronnie, for braving your fears and sharing this precious album with the world.
‘One Shot’ (Official Video)
03. One Shot
05. Frequency Of Love
06. Before The Rise Of An Empire
07. Miles Away
08. Picture Yourself
09. I Prophesize
10. One By One
11. When Dreams Are Not Enough
Ronnie Atkins – Lead and Backing Vocals
Chris Laney – Rhythm Guitars, Keyboards and Backing Vocals
Allan Sørensen – Drums
Morten Sandager – Keyboards
Pontus Egberg – Bass
Anders Ringman – Acoustic Guitars
Pontus Norgren, Kee Marcello, Olliver Hartmann, John Berg, Chris Laney
Additional Backing Vocals
Chris Laney, Linnea Vikström Egg, Olliver Hartmann, Bjørn Strid
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