Monday, May 29, 2017

GREAT WHITE - Full Circle (2017)

GREAT WHITE - Full Circle (2017) full

There's great news for classic hard rock and GREAT WHITE fans as the band will be releasing its new studio album entitled "Full Circle" on June 2, 2017.
The album is the second with singer Terry Ilous after Elation, which was released back in 2012. The effort sees the band re-teaming with its original producer, the legendary Michael Wagener.

To put it clear from the start, "Full Circle" is one of the best records in Great White's career, and one of the best 'unadulterated hard rock' albums I heard in long time.
The new album an honorable nod to their first EP Out Of The Night (Aegean Records, 1983) and debut self-titled full-length record (EMI, 1984).
This means outdated? Not at all, but a classic sounding album plenty of well written and performed songs.

All are terrific songs including the feel-good 'I'm Alright', the trademark Great White bluesy midtempo rocker 'Movin' On' (a highlight), the melodic rocker 'This Is the Life' (another pearl), and the acoustically filled ballad 'Let Me In', in the way that only guitarist Mark Kendall can wrote.

GREAT WHITE - Full Circle (2017) inside

You don't need more blah-blah; go and buy "Full Circle".
This is classic Great White, 'that' kind of songwriting & sound all fans have been waiting for since the '80s.
HIGHLY Recommended

01 - I'm Alright
02 - Movin' On
03 - This Is the Life
04 - Let Me In
05 - Moonshine
06 - Cry of a Nation
07 - Give It Up
08 - Big Time
09 - Never Let You Down

Terry Ilous - vocals
Mark Kendall - guitar, backing vocals
Michael Lardie - guitar, keyboards, backing vocals
Scott Snyder - bass
Audie Desbrow - drums

Pre Order:


Ritchie Blackmore's RAINBOW - Land Of Hope And Glory + I Surrender (2017)

Ritchie Blackmore's RAINBOW - Land Of Hope And Glory + I Surrender (2017) full

The revamped version of Ritchie Blackmore's RAINBOW is releasing its first new music in more than two decades. We have two new tracks: a new song called "Land Of Hope And Glory", and a re-recording of the Rainbow classic "I Surrender", which was written by Russ Ballard and was first released by the band in 1981.

Fortunately, seems iconic guitarist Ritchie Blackmore stepped away from his Renaissance-inspired brand of music with Blackmore's Night and decided to 'rock' again.
Ritchie reformed Rainbow last year to perform a handful of shows with a brand-new lineup of the band. The gigs and CD/DVD recorded were highly successful and Rainbow is on the roll again this 2017.

Although Ritchie initially said that he had no plans to make a new Rainbow album — explaining in early 2016 that he wanted to "just get back to playing the old songs one more time" — he revealed to Japan's Burrn! magazine that he changed his mind.

The current incarnation of Rainbow includes singer Ronnie Romero - frontman of Lords Of Black and member of the new project called The Ferrymen which debut wi ll be released by Frontiers Music soon - awesome keyboardist Jens Johansson, drummer David Keith (Blackmore's Night), bassist Bob Nouveau (ex Blackmore's Night), and backing singers Candice Night and Lady Lynn.

Ritchie Blackmore's RAINBOW -I Surrender (2017)

I really like what I hear in this new Rainbow material.
I think the direction Ritchie wants for this new Rainbow incarnation it's the Dio-era of the band, and singer Ronnie Romero fit the slot pretty well.
Let's hope to hear a full length album soon!

01 - Land of Hope and Glory
02 - I Surrender 2017 (feat. Ronnie Romero)

Ronnie Romero - lead & backing vocals
Ritchie Blackmore - guitar
Jens Johansson - keyboards
Bob Nouveau - bass
David Keith - drums
Candice Night, Lady Lynn - backing vocals



ADRENALINE MOB - We The People [Special Edition Digipak] (2017)

ADRENALINE MOB - We The People [Special Edition Digipak] (2017) full

Fronted by the great Russell Allen, ADRENALINE MOB will release its third studio album, "We The People", on June 2 via Century Media. The band presents here the new rhythm section of drummer Jordan Cannata and bassist David Zablidowsky, but their punchy rocking style remains intact.

As the title "We The People" indicates, there's a political side to Adrenaline Mob. Throughout their years as a musicians and songwriters, they hadn't stayed silent on matters significant. Whether they were masked in metaphor or flatly conspicuous, they've always poured their feelings into song.
It was, as Orlando puts it, a form of catharsis. So, as they were watching the presidential campaigns, feeling the negativity — the constant bickering and finger pointing — they knew Adrenaline Mob's next venture would be affected.

In fact, the first song Orlando began writing for "We The People" was the politically charged rocker 'Blind Leading The Blind'. The title track is very much inspired by the past election year in America, a reflection of our times.
But overall, the songs have certain particular stories that stand on their own. Many of them are also driven by the climate we live in today and some are about having a good time, being free and loving rock 'n' roll. All the tracks have a personality and character to them.

Musically, "We The People" rocks big time.
The album begins with 'King Of The Ring' and the track goes into the usual hard rock / melodic metal sound after a rather trippy intro. Russell’s voice still has the same raspy feel and the parts with the alternating main and backing vocals have been done very well.
Next is the title track of the album and features a groovy riff with guitar harmonies, 'The Killer Inside' is another powerful track talking about a killer who is disguised and attacks without warning. The long guitar solo has been placed perfectly with a nice build up to it.

'Bleeding Hands' is a bit softer with clean toned melodies, but the tempo grow again with 'Chasing Dragons' where Cannata show he's a fitting replacement for the late A.J. Pero. There's lightning fast double bass during the chorus parts and the guitar solo.
'Till The Head Explodes' will literally make your head explode with the perfectly coordinated sheer musical brilliance. Then 'Raise ’em Up' moves away from the domain of social issues and politics to “having a good time, being free and loving rock ‘n’ roll”.

ADRENALINE MOB - We The People [Special Edition Digipak] (2017) back

'Ignorance & Greed' is heavy and aggressive with a great Allen performance, while 'Blind Leading The Blind' add lots of groove.
'Lords Of Thunder' is quite hard rockin' having a Van Halen styled solo. Finally, the album concludes with a fantastic cover of Billy Idol’s classic 'Rebel Yell'.

The Mob 'rules' again with this new album. All songs are strong, heavy, groovy and modern sounding, each telling some kind of a story relevant to the modern world scenarios.
Overall, this is one hell of a record.

01 - King of the Ring
02 - We the People
03 - The Killer's Inside
04 - Bleeding Hands
05 - Chasing Dragons
06 - Til the Head Explodes
07 - What You're Made Of
08 - Raise 'Em Up
09 - Ignorance & Greed
10 - Blind Leading the Blind
11 - Violent State of Mind
12 - Lords of Thunder
13 - Rebel Yell (Billy Idol cover - bonus track)

Russell Allen - vocals
Mike Orlando - guitars
Jordan Cannata - drums
David Zablidowsky - bass

Pre Order:


BAD COMPANY - Run With The Pack [Deluxe Edition remastered] (2017)

BAD COMPANY - Run With The Pack [Deluxe Edition remastered] (2017) full

This May Rhino Records continue their BAD COMPANY archival reissues started two years ago with a newly remastered Deluxe Edition of the band's classic "Run With The Pack".

The album is being issued as two-CD set with a bonus disc of largely unreleased material. This "Run With The Pack" expanded reissue includes unreleased early mixes of 'Honey Child' and 'Simple Man', a killer extended version of the title track, and 'Let There Be Love', a previously unreleased outtake from the recording sessions.
Also a track of special interest for me is the previously unreleased 'Young Blood (Alternate Version 2)' recorded in Grasse, France and engineered by the great Ron Nevison.

"Run With The Pack" is a terrific Classic Rock record. It's Bad Company's at their finest, and for many, represents their best album from their discography.
The record reiterates the raw, rowdy style of their debut, Bad Co., solidifies the loose ends that marred thier second, and adds new directions of its own.
Maybe most importantly, the album is refreshing proof that rockers don't have to produce literature in their lyrics or cultivate personae to create good art. Bad Company's is a purely musical triumph here.

Paul Rodgers's voice and Mick Ralphs's guitar continue to be the quartet's foundation - about half of "Run With The Pack" is the loud abrasive rock they are best known for.
Ralphs is still one of the dirtiest and crudest rock chordists; his thick distortion sustains almost endlessly. But here he shines in what had been his weak area: soloing. Just check 'Live for the Music'.
Similarly, he plays a positively sweet solo on the gentle 'Silver, Blue & Gold' and sports a slide on 'Do Right by Your Woman'. On 'Simple Man' Ralphs combines acoustic and electric guitars to produce a primitive but imaginative result. This is also the first Bad Company song written solely by Ralphs that doesn't explode in some way — he usually sticks to gangbusters like 'Sweet Lil' Sister'.

Paul Rodgers emerges as a vocal virtuoso — he is brilliant, throwing himself into different moods with ease, revealing timbres and energy he has only hinted at since his days in Free.
On ''Sweet Lil' Sister' he has the heat and drive of a true rocker, while 'Simple Man' displays the rich evenness he mastered long ago. He uses echo to great advantage; all singers seem to improve with this device, but Rodgers more than most.

BAD COMPANY - Run With The Pack [Deluxe Edition remastered] (2017) back

'Love Me Somebody' is still another brand of excellence, a true rocking rhythm & blues performance boasting fine work by Ralphs. Rodgers's piano and organ arrangement is pure classic rock and he gives us another stellar vocal performance.

"Run With The Pack" has depth, maturity and subtlety, and like many of classic rock finest moments, new things impress with each hearing. Even more with this pristine remastering from the original production tapes.
A Classic

CD 1 : Run With The Pack remastered
01. Live For The Music
02. Simple Man
03. Honey Child
04. Love Me Somebody
05. Run With The Pack
06. Silver, Blue & Gold
07. Young Blood
08. Do Right By Your Woman
09. Sweet Lil’ Sister
10. Fade Away

CD 2 : Previously Unreleased
01. Live For The Music (Take 1, Alt. Vocal & Guitar)
02. Simple Man (Take 3, Early Mix)
03. Honey Child (Early Mix, Alternative Guitar Solo)
04. Run With The Pack (Extended Version, Alt. Vocal)
05. Let There Be Love (Take 1)
06. Silver, Blue & Gold (Take 1, Early Mix)
07. Young Blood (Alternative Vocal)
08. Do Right By Your Woman (Alternative Vocal)
09. Sweet Lil’ Sister (Live Backing Track)
10. Fade Away (Early Mix, Alternative Guitar Solo)
11. Do Right By Your Woman (Acoustic Version)
12. (I Know) I’m Losing You (Studio Jam)
13. Young Blood (Alternative Version 2)
14. Fade Away (Island Studios Demo)

Paul Rodgers – vocals, guitar, piano
Mick Ralphs – guitar, keyboards
Boz Burrell – bass
Simon Kirke – drums



Sunday, May 28, 2017

RATT - Reach For The Sky [Rock Candy remaster]

RATT - Reach For The Sky [Rock Candy remaster] full

Rock Candy Records has 'Remastered & Reloaded' the first four RATT albums, two were already presented here on this blog, now it's time for the other pair.
Let's go now with the last, the band's fourth '80s release "Reach For The Sky".

After the commercial and much more melodic third album Dancing Undercover, Ratt returned in 1988 with "Reach For The Sky" and this was a rocking return to the band's origins in the vein of their debut album yet really polished in terms of production sound.
This one marked the last Ratt album to be produced by Beau Hill.

The band originally intended for the record to be produced entirely by Mike "Clay" Stone. However, substandard DAT tape recordings of Stone's production efforts prompted Atlantic Records to bring in Hill to assist Stone and more than that, also to re-write half of the songs.

Not only "Reach For The Sky" is a solid album but also sports one of Ratt’s greatest songs ever; "Way Cool Jr.", where they truly captured lightning in a bottle. The single prompted the record sales to over a million.
There are some other really great songs on this album such as "I Want A Woman" and the awesome "City to City".

Also "Don't Bite The Hand That Feeds", "Chain Reaction", "Bottom Line" and "What I'm After" got fire, some of them pretty elaborated.
And Ratt even did their first 'true' power ballad for this one; the cool "I Want To Love You Tonight".
"Reach For The Sky" is often deemed Ratt's weakest album from their popular era, but I find it to be of equal quality to the previous, just more rockin' and expansive.

RATT - Reach For The Sky [Rock Candy remaster] back

A couple years ago we posted here the Japanese remaster on SHM-CD of "Reach For The Sky", a version with excellent sound dynamics.
This Rock Candy release, as usual with their remasters, it's a bit more bright. This meaning not so warm as a vinyl LP but more modern, a truly 'digital remaster'.
I know many listeners prefer the 'vinyl-like sound' richer in middle range equalization, but believe me, this Rock Candy remaster indeed rocks in modern player systems.
A HIGHLY Recommended album to your US Melodic Hard collection.

You've seen it first here, at 0dayrox

01 - City To City
02 - I Want A Woman
03 - Way Cool Jr.
04 - Don't Bite The Hand That Feeds
05 - I Want To Love You Tonight
06 - Chain Reaction
07 - No Surprise
08 - Bottom Line
09 - What's It Gonna Be
10 - What I'm After

Stephen Pearcy - vocals
Warren DeMartini - guitar and vocals
Robbin Crosby - guitar and vocals
Juan Croucier - bass and vocals
Bobby Blotzer - drums, harmonica, percussion



Saturday, May 27, 2017

RATT - Invasion Of Your Privacy [Rock Candy remaster]

RATT - Invasion Of Your Privacy [Rock Candy remaster] full

Rock Candy Records have 'Remastered & Reloaded' the first four RATT albums, two were already presented here on this blog, now it's time for the other pair.
Let's go first with the awesome "Invasion Of Your Privacy", Ratt's second effort.

Hot on the heels of their successful debut and produced again by super talented Beau Hill providing an even glossier treatment, Ratt released their second album "Invasion Of Your Privacy" in June of 1985.
The melody, the hooks and the catchy choruses are still here, but this album showed the band growing as musicians and songwriters.
Driven b Warren DeMartini and the late Robbin Crosby (RIP) riffs, "Invasion Of Your Privacy" is more edgy, punchy and in many ways, more rocking than its predecessor.

Everyone knows the great singles "Lay It Down", "You're in Love" and "What You Give Is What You Get", but every song on this album is super.
I think this is why I like this studio effort better than Out Of The Cellar because there is no filler. At some point when they were writing and recording for this album, Ratt just got into a 'climax zone'.

Particularly "Never Use Love", "Give It All" and "Got Me On The Line" showcase more elaborated arrangements still retaining the catchy factor.
Ratt's first ballad also appeared on this album. "Closer To My Heart" is your normal hair metal ballad but with a given boost of energy that makes it rocking anyway.

RATT - Invasion Of Your Privacy [Rock Candy remaster] back

Some time ago we posted here the Japanese remaster on SHM-CD of "Invasion Of Your Privacy" which sound pretty awesome. This Rock Candy remaster, as usual, it's a bit more bright.
A really liked the good separation of instruments, a boost in the bass, and the added punch without distortion.
Ratt's "Invasion Of Your Privacy" is one of the best Hard Rock albums from the '80s, and this is a Highly Recommended remaster.
A Must Have Classic.

01 - You're In Love
02 - Never Use Love
03 - Lay It Down
04 - Give It All
05 - Closer To My Heart
06 - Between The Eyes
07 - What You Give Is What You Get
08 - Got Me On The Line
09 - You Should Know By Now
10 - Dangerous But Worth The Risk

Stephen Pearcy: Lead vocals
Warren DeMartini: Lead & Rhythm guitar
Robbin Crosby: Lead & Rhythm guitar
Juan Croucier: Bass
Bobby Blotzer: Drums



SLAUGHTER - Stick It To Ya [Japan Edition remastered +4] Out Of Print

SLAUGHTER - Stick It To Ya [Japan Edition remastered +4] Out Of Print full

With the really good new Mark Slaughter solo album just released, it's a nice opportunity to revisit his band's SLAUGHTER most successful record: "Stick It to Ya" in its Japanese Edition remastered, now out of print.

Slaughter formed in Las Vegas, Nevada, in late 1988 out of the ashes of lead vocalist Mark Slaughter and bassist Dana Strum's previous band, Vinnie Vincent Invasion. Vinnie Vincent Invasion's record company, Chrysalis Records, took the $4 million contract away from Vinnie Vincent for over-exceeding his credit line with the label, and transferred the contract to former members Slaughter and Strum.
By 1989, Slaughter and Strum completed the lineup by recruiting lead guitarist Tim Kelly and drummer Blas Elias.

Produced by Mark Slaughter & Dana Strum, Slaughter debut album "Stick It to Ya" sold over 2 million copies and became one of the biggest CDs of 1990, with three singles in the Top 40 and their videos in solid rotation on the various music television outlets.
The LP was also nominated for a Best Metal Album of the Year at the 1991 American Music Awards show.

Their success may have seemed to happen overnight, but as far as the band was concerned, it came as the result of plenty of hard work.
What made Slaughter work as unit was the songwriting of Mark and Dana, and most of it still stands up. A lot of this material — straight up melodic hard rock with a little flourish — is solid and consistent.
The late Tim Kelly on guitar drives these tracks never pretending to be a great soloist, but making up with dedication and commitment what he lacks in virtuosity. Mark Slaughter's raspy, higher-pitched vocals are pleasingly distinctive, while Blas Elias on drums and Dana Strum on the bass provide a thumping foundation to build on.

The anthemic “Up All Night”, the killer “Eye To Eye”, “Desperately”, "Mad About You" and the great, atmospheric ballad “Fly To The Angels” (with solid lyrics above the average for this kind of songs) are my favorites.

SLAUGHTER - Stick It To Ya [Japan Edition remastered +4] Out Of Print booklet

Speaking about the bonus tracks; "Fly to the Angels [Acoustic Version]" and "Wingin’ It" were included on the original CD release too, but not the cassette or LP versions of "Stick It To Ya". “Wingin’ It” is an accapella joke tune, only a minute in length, but absolutely hilarious to this day. I wish the album had been re-sequenced so that it still closes the album, as this is an obvious closer.
After that, there are four demos. These demos are remarkable in how fully realized they are. The songs were slightly changed later for the definitive versions.

More than 'just another hair metal band', Slaughter showcased more substance above the average on their debut "Stick It to Ya", arguably the last melodic hard / hair metal band to make it big before the grunge dark age.
This remaster delivers the songs fuller and clear, and for sure it's the definitive version of this really strong record.
A must have in your US Melodic Hard Rock collection.

01 - Eye to eye
02 - Burnin' bridges
03 - Up all night
04 - Spend my life
05 - Thinking of June
06 - She wants more
07 - Fly to the angels
08 - Mad about you
09 - That's not enough
10 - You are the one
11 - Gave me your heart
12 - Desperately
13 - Loaded gun
14 - Fly to the angels [Acoustic version]
15 - Wingin' it
16 - Mad about you [Demo]
17 - She wants more [Demo]
18 - Up all night [Demo]
19 - Fly to the angels [Demo]

Mark Slaughter - Lead Vocals, guitar, and keyboards
Tim Kelly - Guitar, background vocals
Dana Strum - Bass, background vocals
Blas Elias - Drums, percussion, background vocals

Out Of Print


Friday, May 26, 2017

STORMBURST - Raised On Rock (2017)

STORMBURST - Raised On Rock (2017) full

AOR Heaven Records doesn't stop to surprise us with new quality bands in their roster and STORMBURST is just another little pearl who are releasing today, May 26, their debut on the label titled "Raised On Rock".
First of all, don't be fooled by the CD artwork: no, this is not a classic metal album. But you can use the 'classic' term here for a wonderful mix of Melodic Rock / Hard Rock spiced with lovely '80s-styled AOR keyboards.

Stormburst was formed back in 2014 by experienced musicians from the Swedish scene: bass player Kent Jansson and singer Lars-Åke Plåtis Nilsson where part of the really good band Keen Hue having released an adorable melodious album in the firt half of the '90s.
Thomas Hansson was the guitarist for Coastline, another Swedish melodic rock band with a solid album appeared in 2003. Then, to get the special sound that they wanted, Jansson called the keyboardist he met years ago when both were members of Six Feet Under: Peter Östling.
Finally, they recruited hard hitting drummer Peter Zeke Ytterberg (also ex- Keen Hue) to complete the line-up, and the demos were sent to several labels. AOR Heaven Records immediately signed Stormburst, and the result is heard today on "Raised On Rock".

"Raised On Rock" is a tribute to all musical heroes the members in Stormburst grew up with, and the style they love and played all their lives; classy Melodic Rock / AOR.
Opener "Show Me the Way" is like a mix of the first Bad Habit and '80s Styx, and you get instantly hooked by these guys. Smooth melodic vocals, keyboards galore and a catchy as hell chorus.

'Say You Will' is just another AOR gem with 'that' pumping midtempo verses adorned with synths, while the chorus harmonies are to die for.
I love the AOR atmospheres in 'Show Me a Sign' with a slightly British feel, then 'Touched by Love' is a superb ballad that bing to mind Moritz. Title track "Raised On Rock" offers more great melodies and nice lyrics for all of us who love this type of music.
If you need more rocking stuff, Stormburst provide balance with 'Under the Gun', a hard rocker akin Scorpions (much due to Nilsson's Meine-like vocals), and 'Give Me' has a bit of Treat or Fate in its riffs.

STORMBURST - Raised On Rock (2017) inside

And then the band delivers another little gem with 'All I Want Is You', one of the best pure Melodic Rock songs you'll hear this year. Put into the mix the first Harem Scarem, some Heartland and Scandi-like keys and you have it. A highlight.
The melodic yet more groovy 'Lost and Blue' bring to mind English band Daylight Robbery, then 'Restless Hearts' is just another terrific Melodic Rock / AOR midtempo mixing clean guitars with sharp riffs and a stadium-ready chorus. Another highlight in mere 2:47 minutes.

I am in love with Stormburst's "Raised On Rock". A band with a 'metal' name & album artwork but man, the music packed inside is first class Melodic Rock / AOR of the purest '80s caste.
From the songs structures and the clever yet classy arrangements to the awesome melodies, contagious choruses and pristine production, this will be, easily, one of my favorite releases this 2017.
Yeah, it's that good. Get you copy now.
HIGHLY Recommended

01. Show Me the Way
02. Say You Will
03. Under the Gun
04. Show Me a Sign
05. Touched by Love
06. Give Me
07. Raised on Rock
08. Chains of Darkness
09. Never Too Late
10. Lay Your Love on Me
11. All I Want Is You
12. Lost and Blue
13. Restless Hearts
14. I’m Going Down

Lars-Ake ”Plåtis” Nilsson (Keen Hue) - vocals
Thomas Hansson (Steam, Coastline) - guitar
Kent Jansson (Six Feet Under, Keen Hue, Steam) - bass
Peter Ytterberg (Keen Hue, Moonshine Highway) - drums
Peter Ostling (Six Feet Under) - keyboards



PHASE II PHASE - Face It (2017)

PHASE II PHASE - Face It (2017) full

One of the most relevant Melodic Hard Rock acts from the current Spanish scene is without a doubt PHASE II PHASE who released a very interesting debut some time ago. Now the band from Madrid are band with second effort "Face It", showcasing Phase II Phase progress from songwriting to production.

The original germ of Phase II Phase born in 2010 when Jose L. Gallera (Bass, Backing Vocals) and Jorge Gomez (Keyboards) quit the rock band Arianne to give shape to an own project inspired by the Swedish & Norwegian AOR bands which were part of their musical background during their teens.
Guitarist & singer Zalo Lopez, born and grew up in Stockholm but with Spanish origins was the missing piece to complete Phase II Phase's shape, and together started to write songs and track down some demos.
Since then, Phase II Phase has played the local circuit and opened for many major acts, such as Work Of Art.

You can tell that Jorge Gomez is the musical director in Phase II Phase as all the tunes are profusely keyboard-driven full of swirls and cand-floss synths straight from the Scandinavian book.
That classy '80s Scandi AOR / Melodic Rock sound of Da Vinci, Return or Skagarack are embedded on catchy numbers such as 'Madness', 'Feel The Heat', the highly melodious 'Open Your Eyes' or the pretty awesome 'Will You Remember Me' (a highlight).

If you need more punch go for opener 'Running Out', the anthemic 'Greed' or 'How Do I Feel' all with more guitar presence but always with melodic vocals / harmonies and synth background.

PHASE II PHASE - Face It (2017) inside

Mixed and mastered in Stockholm by Mats Ericsson (Degreed drummer) "Face It" is a really, really good classic Melodic Rock / AOR effort by Phase II Phase.
Not only the band have improved the songwriting on this second CD, but now the arrangements are much more focused and Zalo Lopez's accent is gone. Solid songs, catchy choruses, keyboards / synths in abundance... I'm in.
Fans of late '80s Scandinavian sound in this genre served with an updated production you should check Phase II Phase's new album now.
Strongly Recommended

01. Running Out
02. Feel the Heat
03. Greed
04. Future
05. Madness
06. Heaven and Hell
07. Where Do We Go
08. Open Your Eyes
09. Will You Remember Me
10. Oh, Lord
11. The Sign
12. How Do I Feel

Zalo Lopez (vocals, guitar)
Alfredo Clemente (guitar, vocals)
Jorge Gomez (keyboards)
Jose L. Gallera (bass, vocals)
Stelian Cotet (drums)



T'PAU - Bridge Of Spies [Remastered Expanded Edition] (2015) Out Of Print

T'PAU - Bridge Of Spies [Remastered Expanded Edition] (2015) full

T'PAU's "Bridge Of Spies [Remastered Expanded Edition]" was featured on this blog in exclusive when appeared two years ago. After the recent T'PAU 4CD Box Set presented here, some of you asked for a revamp of this "Bridge Of Spies [Remastered Expanded Edition]", as it become out of print soon and it's already considered a collectors item.

Lead by singer Carol Decker, T'PAU is one finest rock&pop acts emerged from UK in the Eighties. T'Pau's 1987 celebrated debut album "Bridge Of Spies" was reissued by Universal/Virgin as a 2CD+DVD Super Deluxe Edition featuring a remastered version of the original album, singles, B-sides, hard-to-find remixes, live tracks and previously unreleased demo sessions.

T'Pau' had a string of Top 40 hits in the UK in the late '80s, most notably 'China in Your Hand', 'Heart and Soul' and 'Valentine', and several hits in Europe before disbanding in the early Nineties. Decker still performs under the name T'Pau and released a very good new album in 2015 (presented on this blog).
From the outside looking in the T'Pau story seems to bear all the hallmarks of an overnight success story. The band formed in Shropshire in the UK in 1986 and were signed to a major label and recorded their debut album with legendary producer Roy Thomas Baker (Queen, Journey).

Despite the power of a major label and an A-list producer twiddling the knobs initially things were a little slow as ‘Heart and Soul’ failed to chart in the UK. The fortunes of the band would change when the single was featured in an ad for Pepe jeans resulting in a huge hit in the USA.
A UK re-release would provide the band with their first hit before ‘China in Your Hand’ would spend five weeks at the top of the British charts.
From a personal point of view, in the mid '80s my taste in music was fixated on melodic hard rock and AOR so T’Pau (oddly named after a Star Trek character) seemed to have some pretty good tunes and just enough guitars and keyboards to catch my attention. The fact that the music videos for the singles seemed to be on MTV every five minutes may have helped.

All of this brings us, finally, to the release of this new 'huge' expanded edition of "Bridge Of Spies" which was originally rumored to be happening back in 2012 but these things can take time. A band such as T’Pau and other 80’s acts that have recently received the deluxe style treatment is that the 1980’s were a maze of releases that kept any fan of the band on their toes.
If you wanted to own all the various mixes, live tracks and other oddities you might well need to buy the 7” single, 12” single, Cd single, 7” Picture Disc, 12” Picture Disc and maybe even a cassette single, all almost impossible to find.
In these modern times record companies / big box retailers have invented the Target, Best Buy, iTunes exclusive content… so maybe times haven’t changed that much.

The new release of "Bridge Of Spies" is a remastered 3 disc set; the first disc features a remastered version of the album with an additional 8 bonus tracks. This is very much an '80s album, mainly due to the production choices of the day, the drums have that crisp sound of the period.
The bonus tracks that round out the first disc include the single versions of their two signature hits, which is great for fans as ‘China In Your Hand’ was re-recorded for single release.
Other B-sides from the period include an energetic live version of ‘Sex Talk’ which demonstrates that the band could put on a good show.
Other hard to find B-sides are ‘On a Wing’ which benefits from spiky, rocking tremolo guitar parts courtesy of Dean Howard, while ‘Giving My Love Away’ is a neat catchy song that could have easily fitted into the album running time.

T'PAU - Bridge Of Spies [Remastered Expanded Edition] (2015) back

Disc two has a mix of live material from Hammersmith ’88 and a Scottish show from 1987 plus an overdose of ‘Heart and Soul’. No less than 5 more versions of the huge stateside hit are presented here including the US Radio Edit, and an extended remix which boosts drum & vocal tracks and is a must for '80s music fans.
The exhaustive selection of material on this disc is rounded out by two cover tunes as singer Carol Decker takes a break and guitarist Ronnie Rogers do lead vocal duties on ‘Walk Away Renee’, and the guitar driven, fun and frisky ‘I’m A Believer’.
The disc concludes with four demo tracks including the first official release of ‘Maggie’ which is a very welcome addition to the set. The DVD include six official video clips and the long out-of-print VHS live show from Hammersmith Odeon 1988 finally makes it to silver disc.

Universal and the band have done a great job of pulling this together. This Expanded Edition of "Bridge Of Spies" couldn't be more complete, including extremely hard to find material.
It has been very nicely remastered and the temptation that is currently plaguing CD releases of maximizing loudness at the expense of fidelity and resolution has thankfully been avoided.
There's plenty of headroom for the audio to breathe. It sounds superb, noticeably when keyboards tinkle and the drums sound fatter with better base.
A highly recommended release for all '80s music fans.

You've seen it first here, at 0dayrox

DISC 1: Bridge Of Spies remastered + Bonus
01 - Heart And Soul
02 - I Will Be With You
03 - China In Your Hand
04 - Friends Like These
05 - Sex Talk
06 - Bridge Of Spies
07 - Monkey House
08 - Valentine
09 - Thank You For Goodbye
10 - You Give Up
11 - China In Your Hand - Reprise
12 - Heart And Soul (Single Version)
13 - China In Your Hand (Single Version)
14 - Sex Talk (Live Single Version)
15 - On The Wing (B-Side)
16 - No Sense Of Pride (B-Side)
17 - Giving My Love Away (B-Side)
18 - Still So In Love (B-Side)
19 - Thank You For Goodbye Rides Again (B-Side)

DISC 2: B-Sides, Remix, Live and Demos
01 - Heart And Soul (US Radio Edit)
02 - Heart And Soul (Remix)
03 - Taking Time Out (Live Scottish Centre 29-10-87)
04 - Bridge Of Spies (Live Scottish Centre 29-10-87)
05 - Monkey House (Live Scottish Centre 29-10-87)
06 - You Give Up (Live Scottish Centre 29-10-87)
07 - China In Your Hand (Live Hammersmith Odeon '88)
08 - Heart And Soul (Live Hammersmith Odeon '88)
09 - Sex Talk (Live Hammersmith Odeon '88)
10 - Walk Away Renee (B-Side)
11 - I'm A Believer (B-Side)
12 - Heart And Soul (Dance Mix - 4 Twelve Mix)
13 - Heart And Soul (Beats And Rap Mix)
14 - Heart And Soul (Dub Mix)
15 - Monkey House (Demo)
16 - You Give Up (Demo)
17 - Only One Dream [Friends Like These] (Demo)
18 - Maggie (Previously Unreleased Demo)

Carol Decker: All Vocals
Ronnie Rogers: Guitars
Taj Wyzgowski: Guitars
Michael Chetwood: Keyboards
Paul Jackson: Bass
Tim Burgess: Drums, Percussion



Thursday, May 25, 2017

MARK SLAUGHTER - Halfway There (2017)

MARK SLAUGHTER - Halfway There (2017) full

Slaughter founder / vocalist MARK SLAUGHTER will release his sophomore solo album, "Halfway There", tomorrow Friday 26. The follow-up to 2015's independently released Reflections In A Rear View Mirror is a stunning return to form for Mark Slaughter, channeling the familiar hard rock sensibility of classic-era Slaughter releases like 'Stick It To Ya' and 'The Wild Life' with a mature, progressive melodic bent.

The lead track "Hey You" kicks off with a driving riff and a catchy melody that would fit nicely on 1992's The Wild Life without sounding dated. The album moves smoothly into “Devoted” which is a heavier, slightly darker sounding tune, before moving to “Supernatural,” a melodic catchy rock song with a killer chorus which has always been a staple of the Slaughter sound.
As a solo artist, it is apparent that this is a very personal album that Mark Slaughter has taken careful time in laying out.
This shows too on the title track of “Halfway There,” which is a well-written power ballad / arena anthem filled with personal emotion and with that early '90s feel.

It is important to note this album has great guitar work throughout wisely arranged to complement the songs. I mention this because it is brought to you by none other than Mark Slaughter himself.
Some people are unaware that before Mark was known as a lead singer, he was a shredding guitar player on the radar of Mike Varney who was known for finding the next big guitar heroes in the '80s.
For instance, there's some kick ass, heavier edged tracks in "Conspiracy", the frisky guitar-driven 'Turn It', and some progressive touches in "Reckless".

Then "Forevermore", while still offering a certain edge, turn on AOR accessibility in the melody and groove.Something similar comes with "Not Here", where subtle piano twists with lighter electric guitar and notable bass line before opening up for more ambitious riffs, leading to another sweet guitar solo at the mid point.

Mark Slaughter is a truly talented cat, capable to write a catchy stadium rocker or an elaborated, consistent song with hard / progressive overtones. And this is the core of "Halfway There", a mature mix of tunes cleverly arranged, performed and produced.
Easily the best Melodic (Hard) Rock you can get this month.

01. Hey You
02. Devoted
03. Supernatural
04. Halfway There
05. Forevermore
06. Conspiracy
07. Reckless
08. Disposable
09. Turn It
10. Not Here

Mark Slaughter – vocals, guitars, bass, keyboards, orchestration
Josh Eagan – drums
Jaymi “Pink Bassman” Millard – additional bass
Bill Jordan – piano on “Halfway There”



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