Sunday, October 15, 2017

VALENTINE - Valentine [Rock Candy remaster] (2017)

VALENTINE - Valentine [Rock Candy remaster] (2017) full

Fronted by Hugo's (future Journey singer) smooth vocals, VALENTINE's awesome self-titled debut album has just been remastered for the first time by Rock Candy Records specialists.
Easily, "Valentine" is one of the best AOR / Melodic Hard Rock releases of the beginning of the '90s. And in my book, a must have album.

The release of "Valentine" in 1990 is one of the sad examples of bad timing and misfired opportunities by bad management and wrong music executives. If any '80s AOR / Melodic Hard Rock band should have made a huge international splash then this should have been the one.

Formed in New York during the mid-Eighties and fronted by the sensational vocalist Hugo Valenti, the band soon made friends amongst the NY music business cognoscenti, leading to major management opportunities (Michael Bolton’s manager Louis Levin) and a coveted major label deal with Columbia Records.

It was easy to see why they attracted such a passionate reaction, armed with music that was not only powerful and memorable but also displayed a songwriting ability that left the competition in the dust.
Amazingly the band’s fortunes took a nose dive when executive changes at the label left them high and dry, forcing them to switch to another company, Giant Records, helmed by industry heavyweight Irving Azoff.

Produced by Neil Kernon (Autograph, Queensryche, Lynch Mob) the album was eventually released in late 1990, and it received a great reception from the Melodic Rock aficionados.

Packed with incredible songs, ranging from gilt-lined AOR such as ‘Runnin’ On Luck Again’ (featured in the movie Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead but not into the soundtrack CD), ‘Too Much Is Never Enough’, to the pomp blast of ‘Where Are You Now’.

The strong melodic theme continues with the keyboard-heaven 'Someday', the terrific harmony-filled 'We Run', and the cutting 'Once in a Lifetime', combining a perfect blend of keys / huge guitar solos, killer vocals and catchy choruses.
But the icing on the cake must surely be ‘Never Said It Was Gonna Be Easy’, one of the greatest power ballads of all time.

I know many people lists "Valentine" as a cult classic, but for me it's an essential AOR / Melodic Hard Rock album in your collection.
All in all a complete overview of what the genre was in the late '80s / early '90s: luxurious, bright, smooth and polished.
Hard to find for many years, now with the clinical remaster by Rock Candy it sounds in all its glory.
A Must Have

You've seen it first here, at 0dayrox

01 - Runnin' On Luck Again
02 - No Way
03 - Tears In The Night
04 - Too Much Is Never Enough
05 - Never Said It Was Gonna Be Easy
06 - Where Are You Now
07 - Naughty Girl
08 - Once In A Lifetime
09 - Someday
10 - We Run
11 - You'll Always Have Me

Hugo - lead & backing vocals
Adam Holland - guitars
Craig Pullman - keyboards
Gerard Zappa - bass
Neil Christopher - drums
Additional Musicians:
Mark Radice - keyboards, synths
Terry Brock, Jon Fiore - backing vocals
Neil Kernon - various instruments, producer



GARY WRIGHT - The Light Of Smiles [Rock Candy Remaster] (2017)

GARY WRIGHT - The Light Of Smiles [Rock Candy Remaster] (2017) full

Rock Candy Records have just remastered the two best albums by GARY WRIGHT, the American musician known for his role in helping establish the synthesizer as a leading instrument in rock & pop music. "The Light Of Smiles" is Gary Wright's fourth album, including as session musicians true legends in this matter such as David Foster, Jay Graydon and Steve Porcaro.

Gary Wright's place in musical history was undoubtedly secured by the huge international hit single ‘Dream Weaver’, a recording that still has an afterlife to this day. But that wasn’t the first time Wright had generated interest in his musical career.
Back in the late '60s this New Jersey born musician relocated to the UK and, on the encouragement of Island Records boss Chris Blackwell, joined forces with Spooky Tooth, one of the most respected acts of the time.

When Spooky Tooth broke up, Wright moved back to America and secured a prestigious solo deal with the Warner Brothers label, recording ‘The Dream Weaver’ album which proved to be an unexpected success, selling close to a million copies.
Refocusing his attention, he quickly set about recording the follow up album, once again recorded in Los Angeles, and building on the layered keyboard style that he had become known for.

It also featured a few of his highly regarded touring musicians such as drummer Jim Keltner, keyboardist David Foster and future Toto bassist Steve Porcaro.
Melodic and atmospheric in nature the tracks appear to conjoin both lyrically and musically. There is a decidedly light, poppy progressive rock feel to the presentation, partly driven by precision musicianship and expansive arrangements.

Tracks such as ‘Watersign’, ‘Time Machine’ and ‘Phantom Writer’ are impressive slices of melodic proggy with a defined AOR edge, bringing to mind Supertramp, Giuffria's Angel, The Alan Parson’s Project, etc.
As you could imagine, here's tons of lovely analog synthesizers and keyboards, in a work that influenced many artists / music to come in the following years.
Impeccable, pristine remaster by Rock Candy Records. (thanks to Mamedia for this one!)
Highly Recommended

You've seen it first here, at 0dayrox

01 - Water Sign
02 - Time Machine
03 - I Am The Sky
04 - Who Am I
05 - Silent Fury
06 - Phantom Writer
07 - The Light Of Smiles
08 - I'm Alright
09 - Empty Inside
10 - Are You Weepin'
11 - Child Of Light

Piano, Clavinet, Synthesizer – David Foster, Peter Reilich
Synthesizer – Gary Mielke, Jay Graydon
Bass [Moog] – Steve Porcaro
Drums, Percussion – Art Wood, Jim Keltner
String Arrangements – Peter Reilich
Backing Vocals – David Pomeranz, Lorna Wright
Lead Vocals – Justin Wright (track 3)
Lead Vocals, Clavinet, Effects, Bass, Synths – Gary Wright



Saturday, October 14, 2017

MONTROSE - Montrose [Deluxe Edition remastered] (2017)

MONTROSE - Montrose [Deluxe Edition remastered] (2017) full

Rhino Records introduces Deluxe Editions for MONTROSE albums, starting with the awesome, classic debut "Montrose [Deluxe Edition remastered]", with a fresh 2017 remaster plus a bonus disc with previously unreleased material.

Montrose debut was (and still is) one of the most influential Hard Rock albums of all time, specially for American musicians. Ronnie Montrose was an in-demand session guitarist before that, but he was searching for a self-directed musical exploration when he met a young, inexperienced Sammy Hagar.
They recruited beast drummer Denny Carmassi (future Damn Yankees member) and within a month 'Montrose the band' signed to Warner Bros. Records, they got Ted Templeman (Van Halen) producing, Don Landee engineering and the first Montrose album was born a month after that.

The disc combines good-time, party rock with a metal edge and slick guitar work, a sound that bands like Van Halen and Aerosmith would later adopt and polish to perfection (Templeman / Landee were Van Halen's initial tech team).
"Montrose" feature some of the band’s most enduring music, like “Rock Candy,” “Bad Motor Scooter” and “Space Station #5.”

All 17 tracks on the bonus disc are previously unreleased, including demos for “Rock Candy” and “Good Rockin’ Tonight,” as well as the unreleased song “Shoot Us Down.”
The remaining bonus tracks feature live performances that were recorded in April 1973 at the Record Plant in California and broadcast on radio station KSAN.
Along with hits like “Bad Motor Scooter” and “Rock The Nation,” the set list also included a cover of the classic “Roll Over Beethoven.”

MONTROSE - Montrose [Deluxe Edition remastered] (2017) back

This is a killer release from one of the essential Hard Rock albums that must be in your collection.
Listen to the previously unreleased track “Shoot Us Down” worth the admission alone, but also the never heard live performance.
This Rhino remaster is more 'traditional' than the recent Rock Candy, some kind of vintage remaster akin a LP vinyl sound.

01 - Rock The Nation (Remastered)
02 - Bad Motor Scooter (Remastered)
03 - Space Station #5 (Remastered)
04 - I Don't Want It (Remastered)
05 - Good Rockin' Tonight (Remastered)
06 - Rock Candy (Remastered)
07 - One Thing On My Mind (Remastered)
08 - Make It Last (Remastered)
09 - One Thing On My Mind (Demo)
10 - Shoot Us Down
11 - Rock Candy (Demo)
12 - Good Rockin' Tonight (Demo)
13 - I Don't Want It (Demo)
14 - Make It Last (Demo)

DISC 2: Live KSAN Radio Session, CA, USA 4/21/73
01 - Intro
02 - Good Rockin' Tonight
03 - Rock Candy
04 - Bad Motor Scooter
05 - Shoot Us Down
06 - One Thing On My Mind
07 - Rock The Nation
08 - Make It Last
09 - You're Out Of Time
10 - Roll Over Beethoven
11 - I Don't Want It

Sammy Hagar – lead vocals
Ronnie Montrose – guitar
Bill Church – bass
Denny Carmassi – drums



MONTROSE - Paper Money [Deluxe Edition remastered] (2017)

MONTROSE - Paper Money [Deluxe Edition] (2017) full

Rhino Records introduces Deluxe Editions for MONTROSE albums, starting with the band's first two celebrated albums. This is the second from the band, "Paper Money [Deluxe Edition remastered]", with a fresh 2017 remaster from original tapes plus a bonus disc with previously unreleased material.

There's little doubt that the self titled debut Montrose album was an absolute game changer in the world of hard rock / metal. In fact, these days it is pretty much recognised as ground zero for all that became of the genre, with a sound and swagger that birthed many followers, including Van Halen.
In fact, Eddie Van Halen always said that the sound he had in mind for his band was inspired by Montrose.

Formed by, and named after guitarist Ronnie Montrose, the band featured then unknown vocalist Sammy Hagar who would later go on to enjoy a successful solo career and, ironically, fronting Van Halen.
This second Montrose album, craftily titled "Paper Money", was recorded and produced once again by master of the art Ted Templeman.

Musical diversity is the driving force behind "Paper Money", which opens with the catchy melodic rock / pop flavored and radio-friendly "Underground", an unlikely cover of a song released the previous year by eccentric Warner Bros. labelmates Chunky, Novi & Ernie.
Featuring an organ-like guitar sound created by using a Leslie speaker cabinet instead of a conventional guitar amplifier and given a major musical makeover that obscures the song's dark, death-obsessed lyrics, the song sets the tone for an album that is unpredictable at every turn.

Indeed, the record delivers a broad musical spectrum which includes an acoustic ballad cover (the Jagger / Richards penned "Connection") and an upbeat, spooky instrumental in "Starliner", plenty of crazy effects.
There's an intriguing, grooving number in "Spaceage Sacrifice", while the epic and eerily prophetic title track has my favorite Sammy Hagar vocals on the album.
We have as well a moving hard rocker and a highlight in "I Got The Fire", a song that easily picks up where the debut album left off, a track effectively covered by Iron Maiden several years later.

MONTROSE - Paper Money [Deluxe Edition] (2017) back

The bonus CD feature live performances that were recorded in at the Record Plant in California and broadcast on radio station KSAN.
This Rhino remaster of "Paper Money" from the master tapes is more 'traditional' than the recent Rock Candy, some kind of vintage remaster akin a LP vinyl sound.
Very Recommended

Disc 1:
01 - Underground (Remastered)
02 - Connection (Remastered)
03 - The Dreamer (Remastered)
04 - Starliner (Remastered)
05 - I Got The Fire (Remastered)
06 - Spaceage Sacrifice (Remastered)
07 - We're Going Home (Remastered)
08 - Paper Money (Remastered)

Disc 2:
Prev. Unreleased Live KSAN Radio Session, CA, 12-26-74
01 - Intro
02 - I Got The Fire
03 - Rock Candy
04 - Bad Motor Scooter
05 - Spaceage Sacrifice
06 - One And A Half
07 - Roll Over Beethoven
08 - Trouble
09 - Space Station #5

Sammy Hagar – lead vocals
Ronnie Montrose – guitar, lead vocals on 7
Alan Fitzgerald – bass guitar
Denny Carmassi – drums
Mark Jordan – piano on 2
Nick DeCaro – mellotron on 7



VOODOO CIRCLE - More Than One Way Home [LTD Edition Digipak +2] retail

VOODOO CIRCLE - More Than One Way Home [LTD Edition Digipak +2] full

VOODOO CIRCLE is the vehicle for guitar player Alex Beyrodt (Primal Fear) to thresh his passion for '80s Classic Hard Rock. Backed by Pink Cream 69 front man David Readman, “More Than One Way Home” is the third release from Voodoo Circle, a quality collection of songs that mostly sounds like a long lost Whitesnake album from the late Eighties.
This Limited Edition Digipak includes 2 very good bonus tracks.

Just taking a look at some of the song titles here: evokes more than a passing resemblance to Whitesnake and that's before we even get to the music.
"Tears In The Rain", "Heart Of Babylon", "The Saint and the Sinner", "Victim Of Love"... and the similarity certainly doesn't end there.

Take your pick from any of those above tracks, from the pounding slow blues of "Tears In the Rain" to the heavier riffing of "Heart Of Babylon", as well as the likes of "Cry For Love" and title track "More than One Way Home" and, coupled with the fact that David Readman sounds more like David Coverdale than the man himself can manage these days, you have a pure Whitesnake-like album here.

VOODOO CIRCLE - More Than One Way Home [LTD Edition Digipak +2] booklet

Opening cut "Graveyard City" and "Bane Of My Existence" both have crunchy hard rockn' riffing that introduces a flavour of Dio into the mix, albeit still with that Whitesnake influence.
Elsewhere, "The Ghost In Your Heart" does have a bit of Blackmore / Purple vibe to it, but once again it's the '80 incarnation circa ‘Perfect Strangers’ that springs to mind, and in fact sections of this sound dangerously close to that album's title track.

Finally, "Open Your Eyes" and one of the bonuses in this Limited Edition called "Castles Burn" rock out properly with the vibe of classic Rainbow, while the other bonus "Shape Of Things To Come" recalls Black Sabbath Tony Martin era.

VOODOO CIRCLE - More Than One Way Home [LTD Edition Digipak +2] back

As you can see, "More Than One Way Home" is absolutely influenced by British '80s Classic Hard Rock, and that's a good thing in my book, even more when it's delivered with this outstanding quality by these seasoned musicians. The album is finely produced and expertly performed by the talented Alex Beyrodt, David Readman and all the involved.
You can't dislike any bit of "More Than One Way Home", an album which does not pretend break any ground, just Rock in the traditional style with class.
HIGHLY Recommended

01. Graveyard City
02. Tears in the Rain
03. Heart of Babylon
04. Cry for Love
05. Alissa
06. The Ghost in your Heart
07. Bane of my Existence
08. More than one Way home
09. The Killer in you
10. The Saint and the Sinner
11. Victim of Love
12. Open Your Eyes
13. Shape Of Things To Come
14. Castles Burn

Alex Beyrodt (PRIMAL FEAR, SINNER) - Guitar
David Readman (PINK CREAM 69) - Vocals
Mat Sinner (SINNER, PRIMAL FEAR) - Bass
Markus Kullmann (DEZPERADOZ) - Drums
Zlatko Kresic (LIQUID HOME) - Keyboards



Friday, October 13, 2017

KING KING - Exile & Grace (2017)

KING KING - Exile & Grace (2017) full

The previous KING KING record surprised us greatly with their mature, soulful sound. After listening to their new album "Exile & Grace" released today I can see why Black Country Communion has chosen King King as supporting band for their next tour.

King King really do make this kind of Classic Rock thing sound so effortless. Having bagged yet more bluesy gongs over the past year or so, this fourth album and follow-up to 2015’s Reaching For The Light finds the band on top form, the warmth and power of their sound given a welcome tougher, riffier edge by a muscular mix from Chris Sheldon (Foo Fighters).

'Tear It All Up' and opener '(She Don’t) Gimme No Lovin’ are the main tracks benefitting from grittier guitars, but the entire album has a ballsier feel than before.
They rock hard enough to suggest their recent arena tour has helped shape their riff driven material into a coherent new direction.

They maintain the momentum on the muscular funky groove of ‘Heed The Warning’, which boasts one of the best hooks on the album, while 'Long Time Running' in particular boast a wonderfully confident bluesy swagger.
'Broken' and 'Find Your Way Home' do the whole soulful thing the band already carry off so well. 'Broken' even sports a little AOR feeling (akin Thunder) with a good use of harmony vocals and a sweeping organ on a heartfelt piece that in spite of the doomy lyrics has an anthemic feel.

The band is gracious in its appreciation of the musical influences – Whitesnake, Bad Company and Thunder with Thin Lizzy style harmony guitars on ‘Betrayed Me’.
On the other hand, 'I Don't Wanna Lie' mix some Bonamassa commercial riffs with some vintage, lovely Gary Moore soloing.

KING KING - Exile & Grace (2017) inside

Several years passed since King King set out as a blues band and since then they’ve moved more towards a stadium rock sound. They’ve sharpened their riffs, honed their songcraft and put all their trust in booming memorable choruses.
And if each album so far has been a progression in terms of songwriting, then ‘Exile & Grace’ fully reveals the band’s stylistic hand.
Most of the material is centred round Alan Nimmo’s intense guitar work and is offset by Bob Fridzema’s keys, as it shifts from bone crunching rock to subtle grooves that bubble up and draw the listener in.

If the title of King King’s last studio album Reaching For The Light was a statement of intent, then "Exile & Grace" cements the deal for a hard rocking band with a bluesy heart and an armoury of riffs powerful enough to help project them on to the next level.
With not an ounce of songwriting fat on display, every song contributes to the overwhelming sense of a band enjoying a seriously creative purple patch. Long may it run.
HIGHLY Recommended

01 - (She Don't) Gimme No Lovin'
02 - Heed the Warning
03 - Broken
04 - Find Your Way Home
05 - Tear It All Up
06 - Betrayed Me
07 - Long Time Running
08 - Nobody Knows Your Name
09 - I Don't Wanna Lie

Alan Nimmo - lead vocals, guitars
Bob Fridzema - keyboards, vocals
Lindsay Coulson - bass, vocals
Wayne Proctor - drums



THE TRACY G GROUP - Tramp (2017)

THE TRACY G GROUP - Tramp (2017) full

Former Dio guitarist Tracy G is back in action with his band THE TRACY G GROUP who are releasing their album "Tramp" today, October 13. Joining Tracy on the disc are drummers Ray Luzier (KXM , David Lee Roth) and Patrick Johansson (Yngwie Malmsteen, W.A.S.P.) as well as vocalist Michael Beatty and bassist Randy Oviedo.

Tracy G has played in a variety of bands including one unsigned act with future singer of Great White, Jack Russell. He also put together the bands Love/Hate with singer Jizzy Pearl, and Swift Kick. He also played with drummer Audie Desbrow (Great White) in Riff Raff, a very popular band around southern California in the early days of '80s US hard rock and metal.
Tracy then joined Dio. In his six years with the band, Tracy G was featured on two studio albums, (Strange Highways and Angry Machines), and one live (Inferno: Last in Live).

Having grown up in the '80s rock & metal era, it often feels like my music catalog has filled to capacity and it is sometimes hard to accept “new” music. The idea of listening something new can be sometimes daunting. If a song doesn’t grab you in the first minute, it can be hard to listen to.
This was not the case when I pressed play to the latest album from The Tracy G Group, "Tramp". Each song, grabs you in the first few seconds.

In fact, Tracy G does not reinvent the wheel here, but has a unique heavy rock music approach when it comes to not only his guitar playing, but his willingness to go beyond and take his musical vision to places few dare to tread.
The album cover makes you think about a glam outfit, however this is swirling hard rock / metal, but not served in the regular way. There's crazy tuned guitars yet in the sense to create groove.
There's a BIG groove in this album. Then atmospheres, fat bass lines, some smashing drumming.

Listening to the album you'll result pretty much blown away. I ask myself, how is Tracy G this good? Sounding better than ever? This creative? All the tracks make sense, sound refreshingly different and go in directions that, musically, no one else seems to think about or try.
The sledgehammer 'The Revolution' sets things off powered by Michael Beatty's vocals delivery and Tracy G.'s crushing riffs. From there your senses are hit with a barrage of both instrumental and lyrical intensity.

THE TRACY G GROUP - Tramp (2017) inside

The highlights are many. 'Leech' is a monsta-groove with some Zakk Wylde on it. The groove laden 'Brokenness' is some kind of Ozzy in its darkness, then 'Bleed' brings to mind Dio, but twisted.
'Bleed' has an atmospheric heavy middle part in the vein of modern day Skid Row, while 'Fireball' adds a bluesy background for its heavy punch.
There's some instrumental tracks as well highlighting the tight chemistry between each musician. Patrick Johansson does a great job hitting the skins featured on seven of the hard hitting tracks with some really stupendous beats. Also featured on this album is ex Korn, David Lee Roth and current KXM drummer Ray Luzier, who plays on four tracks and a local Southern California drummer Adrian Aguilar on one song.

"Tramp" is a powerhouse album loaded full of kick-ass songs that cannot be all consumed in just one sitting. If you want to experience in your face but elaborated US metal / hard rock with uncommon twists you need to check this beast of an album.
It conjures the classic '80s stuff with a modern approach, both in terms of sound and production. It's heavy, groovy, driving and different. Oh, and good.
Strongly Recommended

01 - The Revolution
02 - The Erector
03 - Leech
04 - Brokenness
05 - Arrogant Prick
06 - The California Country Jamboree
07 - Bleed
08 - Evil Is Good
09 - Fireball
10 - P.C.H.
11 - Sea Of Pain
12 - Liar
13 - Me Myself And The Rain

Tracy G - Guitars
Randy Oviedo - Bass
Michael Beatty - Vocals
Ray Luzier (Korn, KXM, D.L. Roth) - Drums
Patrick Johansson (Yngwie Malmsteen, W.A.S.P.) - Drums



SECTION A - Wall Of Silence [2017 edition +2]

SECTION A - Wall Of Silence [2017 edition +2] full

SECTION A, the brainchild of Danish guitar virtuoso (and multi-instrumentalist) Torben Enevoldsen (Fate, Acacia Avenue, Pinnacle Point) are presenting today "Wall Of Silence (2017 version)", released last year by themselves but now via their new label Metalopolis Records with 2 extra tracks.

After 13 years of the band's existence seems that for the new album Enevoldsen needed renewed inspiration energy; enter new singer Nicklas Sonne (Malrun, Defecto). Besides guitars, Torben played bass and keyboards, while Dennis Hansen (Acacia Avenue, Fatal Force) pounded the drums.
All Section A albums feature a special guest, so this time Julien Spreutels (Ethernity, Epysode) was invited to play the darn good keyboard solos.

"Wall Of Silence" (Section A fourth effort) is the band's more straightforward rocking album, blending as usual melodic hard rock melodies with light progressive nuances.
The individual performances are highly impressive. Sonne has a beautifully melodious voice, yet is more than capable of adding that extra grunt when and where needed, while Enevoldsen is a hugely underrated exponent of his instrument, switching from soaring solos to fierce shredding and dirty crunchy staccatos quicker than many guitarists can change effects pedals.

Hansen's drumming is solid and tight, while Spreutels’ adds his own sweeping, melodic interjections on guest forays to the forefront of the sound (Enevoldsen plays the majority of the keyboards nestling gently in the background).

The songwriting is solid, always entertaining and melodic. Enevoldsen (all the writing as well as the bass work) takes no chances with the basic formula, but instead concentrates on the solidity of the format, building atmospherics with aplomb combining massive melodies with catchy hooks and punchy rhythms.
But he is not afraid to unleash a fiery solo here and ease off the pedal there, resulting in a fluidity and organic feel to each track, and the album as a whole.

SECTION A - Wall Of Silence [2017 edition +2] back

"Wall Of Silence" is an album recommended for all rock audiences, blending elaborated passages with catchy melodies.
Section A may be essentially a solo side project for Torben Enevoldsen, but that does not prevent "Wall Of Silence" sounding like an entirely homogeneous entity rather than a vainglorious vanity settler: far from it. This sounds like a real band, and a real good one.
Strongly Recommended

01 - Wall of Silence
02 - Finding the One
03 - All That Matters
04 - No Tomorrow
05 - How Long
06 - Pray for Freedom
07 - Bleeding Chains
08 - Holding On
09 - When All Is Falling
10 - Killing Fields
11 - The Man in the Mirror

Nicklas Sonne - vocals
Torben Enevoldsen - guitars, bass, keyboards
Dennis Hansen - drums
Julien Spreutels - keyboards



Thursday, October 12, 2017

TYKETTO - Live From Milan (2017)

TYKETTO - Live From Milan (2017) full

Released tomorrow October 13 via Frontiers Music under the title "Live From Milan 2017" on CD/DVD, Blu-ray, vinyl, etc, the recording captures TYKETTO's presentation at the Frontiers Rock Festival IV with the band performing their stunning debut 'Don’t Come Easy' entirely, plus 3 extra songs.

Tyketto’s debut album 'Don’t Come Easy' is considered a landmark release among  melodic hard rock albums of the late ‘80s / early ‘90s. While the band has continuously put out quality recordings over the years, fans and critics alike hold the debut album in especially high regard.
So, it was with great pleasure that after releasing the band’s most recent studio album, 'Reach', Frontiers invited Tyketto to play Frontiers Rock Festival IV in Milan, IT to not only play tracks from more recent releases, but to play 'Don’t Come Easy' in its entirety to an adoring audience.

With a line-up comprised of founding members vocalist Danny Vaughn and drummer Michael Clayton Arbeeny along with guitar wizard Chris Green and TEN keyboardist Ged Rylands, Tyketto co-headlined “Day 1” of FRF IV and blew the roof off with their performance of this classic album from back to front (yes, back to front, not front to back).

There's 3 extra songs in ‘Rescue Me’ (from sophomore “Strength In Numbers” in 1994), ‘Dig In Deep’ (from “Dig In Deep” in 2012) and ‘Reach’ (taken from the latest 2016 release), this stunning performance captures all the greatness of Tyketto.
The abnd put out a show stopping set that brings back the glory of my personal favorites like the kicking ‘Seasons’ or the heart breaking ballad ‘Standing Alone’, reflecting both contrast yet outstanding catchiness inherent in both these songs that I still listen to to this day.

Of course, the international crowd flocking to Milan here seem to also share that view (judging by their rapture) which in turn fires the band to belt out these numbers in precision style and passion of their own.
Some of the best moments arrives with the anthemic emotion of ‘Burning Down Inside’ with the crowd singing along to Vaughn’s own soulful highs as well as those heavenly guitars, and by the time the band hit ‘Forever Young’ I am in tears, with memories and joy flooding through uncontrollably.

Given the primo sound quality, “Live From Milan 2017” is an absolute must for any Tyketto fan along with any Melodic Rock / AOR lover seeking a top notch live release this year.
It’s simply impossible not to recommend.

01 - Introduction (Live)
02 - Sail Away (Live)
03 - Strip Me Down (Live)
04 - Nothing but Love (Live)
05 - Walk on Fire (Live)
06 - Lay Your Body Down (Live)
07 - Standing Alone (Live)
08 - Seasons (Live)
09 - Burning Down Inside (Live)
10 - Wings (Live)
11 - Forever Young (Live)
12 - Rescue Me (Live)
13 - Reach (Live)

Danny Vaughn - lead vocals
Chris Green - guitar, vocals
Ged Rylands - keyboards, vocals
Chris Childs - bass, vocals
Michael Clayton - drums, percussion, vocals



ROBIN BECK - Love Is Coming (2017)

ROBIN BECK - Love Is Coming (2017) full

Finally ROBIN BECK is back with new album titled "Love Is Coming" to be released tomorrow via Frontiers Music. We had to wait several years, but well worth it: this is one of Beck's best albums ever.
With the help of super talented Clif Magness co-writing and playing all instruments, Tommy Denander providing some amazing guitar solos, and the kind of meaty production (courtesy of Beck’s husband James Christian) that many latter-day melodic hard rock records lack, Robin Beck has round up a terrific new album.

I enjoyed this album from start to finish. The first 2 songs, “Island” and “On The Bright Side” launch the album with a happy, upbeat, melodic rock / feel-good factor.
In fact, I think “On The Bright Side” is perhaps one of the finest songs Robin Beck has recorded ever, her fine-grained voice has lost none of its belting power, and this track is four minutes of melodic rock brilliance.

“In These Eyes” is my favourite ballad on the album. It has a real sense of powerful emotion behind it, driven by the pairing of Robin Beck’s vocals with the keys. The albums titular track, “Love Is Coming”, is the heaviest of the tracks here, with punchy rhythm and a cracking chorus, and is a definite highlight.
“Lost”, takes us back to firm melodic rock midtempo territory, but the album has some quite varied styles throughout. “Crave The Touch” is another song with a good rhythmic tempo, while “If You Only Knew” is a soulful number showcasing a Robin's different vocal approach.

“Here I Am” is another melodic rock song that feels like it gives us a deep insight into Robin Beck. It starts off slowly, and builds up the pace as it goes. It rocks, but it has a beautiful sensitivity to it.
“Girl Like Me”, another one of my personal highlights, contains all the trademarks that I associate with a Robin Beck song; her smooth vocals, an uptempo beat, and rocking guitar solos, a song that kicks ass and drips sass. It starts off with an excellent solo and we probably see more of her vocal range here on display than on the other songs.

The album finishes with “Warrior”, a very relaxed song which lyrically shows the kind of confidence and assurance that only someone with a resume of musical accomplishments that an artist like Robin Beck can lay claim to.

This album, like Robin Beck herself, shows a mature artist which has been cleverly enough to associate with one of the most talented songwriters / musicians in the business to create her new album: Mr. Clif Magness.
You can hear Magness' touch in every arrangement, twist and instrumentation: he has played most of the instruments with class and style.
Robin Beck is intact in power and delivery, even better like never before as result of years of experience, while husband James Christian (House Of Lords) has provided an intelligent production; shard during the rockers, and poppy (but juicy) in the suave songs.
HIGHLY Recommended

01. Island
02. On The Bright Side
03. In These Eyes
04. Love Is Coming
05. Me Just Being Me
06. On To Something
07. Lost
08. Crave The Touch
09. If You Only Knew
10. Here I Am
11. Girl Like Me
12. Warrior

Robin Beck - Vocals
Clif Magness - All instruments
Tommy Denander - guitars
John Huldt - guitar solo on “Crave The Touch”
James Christian - intro keys, percussion on “Crave The Touch”



BIGFOOT - Bigfoot (2017)

BIGFOOT - Bigfoot (2017) full

Over the last two years or so we've have been following the development of UK rockers BIGFOOT (you can check their EP's here both exceptional for an indie band and with the potential for some breakthrough greatness.
And here comes the big leagues, with a brand new self-titled long player of original music (that's to say they didn't rerun their EPs) for the Frontiers Music label.

There's no mystery about the Bigfoot sound: this is classic melodic hard rock, with some edge for heaviness, definitely with some latent bluesy foundation and groovy rhythms. On this album, as with previous material, I was captivated by several things.
One, is the strength of Antony Ellis' voice and vocal style. He sings clean and melodic, with a harmonic and passionate timbre. His voice is then embraced and embellished by fine background vocal arrangements.

Next up is the twin guitar harmony in riffage, followed by excelling guitar solos. These things are then complimented and supported by a rhythm section that delivers deliberate, albeit heavy, rock groove. All that's left to do is wrap these things in tasty melodies, catchy refrains, and wonderful choruses.
It all works, and works really well.
With these things in mind, some killer melodic hard rock tunes come with 'Tell Me A Lie', 'Eat Your Words', 'Uninvited', and the amazing and catchy opener 'Karma', easily my favorite song.

In the second half of the album, I found that the songs got a bit more heavy. 'Freak Show', 'I Dare You', and 'The Devil In Me' were a little thicker in the riffs, deeper in the bottom end, but without sacrificing melody and harmony.

BIGFOOT - Bigfoot (2017) inside

Within the slow grooving 'Prisoner Of War' you might hear some of that subtle bluesy groove. Yet I found it more self-evident within the semi-ballad 'Forever Alone', that kind of awesome midtempo songs that few still write and craft these days.
Later the album finishes with the large and long anthem 'Yours', another slow burning riff thick number which soars with terrific guitar lines and a pulsating atmosphere.

Bigfoot already surprised us with their self-released material. Now with the debut long-player on major label Frontiers, Bigfoot proves that they aren't some mere and occasional EP band.
Everything has been augmented here, from a more bombastic production to a punchy mix, what has not changed at all are Bigfoot's abilities to write some awesome songs and choruses.
Welcome to the big leagues Bigfoot.
HIGHLY Recommended

01. Karma
02. The Fear
03. Tell Me A Lie
04. Forever Alone
05. Eat Your Words
06. Prisoner Of War
07. Freak Show
08. I Dare You
09. The Devil In Me
10. Uninvited
11. Yours

Antony Ellis - Lead Vocals
Sam Millar – Guitar
Mick McCullagh – Guitar
Matt Avery – Bass
Tom Aspinall - Drums



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