The Battle at Garden’s Gate

The Battle at Garden’s Gate

On their second LP, Greta Van Fleet continues to bow at the altar of classic rock with a heavy dose of blues-soaked riffs and transcendent imagery. “Life’s the story of ascending to the stars as one,” vocalist Josh Kiszka sings with his gravelly tenor on “Heat Above,” an optimistic call-to-arms that soars high with flourishes of acoustic guitar and Hammond organ. But when they’re not pleading for divine unity, the Kiszka brothers—alongside drummer Danny Wagner—embrace stomping, self-empowering anthems (“My Way, Soon”), majestic hard rock with medieval motifs (“Age of Machine”), and pompous power ballads (“Tears of Rain”). Less urgent and more ambitious than 2018’s Anthem of the Peaceful Army, it’s an album that pushes ahead with technical prowess and lots of attitude. On the epic nine-minute closer “The Weight of Dreams,” the band ascends to the pearly gates as they proudly worship the almighty Zep: “Heaven sent us here to meet the hallowed shore/To claim the wealth that we had sold.”

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