Tuesday, August 14, 2018

STEVE PERRY - The Vault [B-sides, unreleased, collaborations] 0dayrox compilation

STEVE PERRY - The Vault [B-sides, unreleased, collaborations] 0dayrox compilation full

It's official; the great STEVE PERRY is back. The vocalist announced yesterday via newly created Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts the message: "I know it's been a long time comin'."
Perry will return with a studio album titled 'Traces' on Oct. 5, according to a new Amazon listing / pre order. This would be the former Journey singer's first new solo project since 1994's For the Love of Strange Medicine.

We are celebrating Perry's comeback with his two solo albums already posted at this blog, but now it's time for the unreleased rarities, demos, contributions and B sides-only, compiled by 0dayrox under the name "The Vault".
Officially released, but exclusive to the CD Maxi-Single is the 'single version' of "You Better Wait" remixed (not the edit version appeared in The Best Of Steve Perry), and "Missing You (Writing Session)" a B-side, exclusive to its CDsingle, a must listen to intimate version where you can appreciate Perry's unique vocals.

We have as well quite unknown contributions by Steve Perry for other artists, such as the superb duet with David Pack in 'A Brand New Start', his lead vocals for the great song of Jeff Golub 'Can't Let You Go', the song recorded for Quest For Camelot Soundtrack (I Stand Alone), or the very rare 2 demo recordings from 1976 with guitarist Forrest McDonald, featuring a very young Perry pre-Journey.

While on other tracks like Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young's 'Soldiers Of Peace', America's 'Can't Fall Asleep To A) Lullaby' or Clannad's 'White Fool' Steve Perry mostly contribute harmony vocals only, you can taste his touch and diversity despite the different musical genres.

And then there's the rarities, all demos from different sessions, all with quite good audio quality.
There's songs from the Street Talk album sessions, some tracks ended into the final tracklist, but many remain unreleased. We find as well songs from For The Love Of Strange Medicine, and Alien Project sessions.
Among the gems there's the rocking AOR of 'Lost Angels', the very Journey-like 'Let Him Go', the punchy 'Let It Rock You', or the elegant midtempo 'Go Away' among others.
THE VOICE Collector's stuff - only at 0dayrox

01 - You Better Wait (Single Version)
02 - Missing You (Writing Session) [B-side]
03 - Lost Angels
04 - Foolish Heart (Demo version)
05 - Captured By The Moment (Demo version)
06 - She's Mine (Demo version)
07 - Let Him Go
08 - Let It Rock You
09 - Go Away
10 - It's Only Love
11 - I Believe
12 - With a Tear
13 - Don't Tell Me You're Leaving
14 - Walk Your Face Right Out of Here
15 - Oh Sherrie (karaoke version)
16 - I Stand Alone [Quest For Camelot OST]
17 - David Pack & Steve Perry - A Brand New Start
18 - Jeff Golub - Can't Let You Go (feat Steve Perry)
19 - Crosby, Stills, Nash, Young - Soldiers Of Peace (feat Steve Perry)
20 - Clannad - White Fool (feat Steve Perry)
21 - Forrest McDonald - It's Over (feat. Steve Perry)
22 - Forrest McDonald - Dreams Reality (feat. Steve Perry)
23 - America - (Can't Fall Asleep To A) Lullaby (feat Steve Perry)
24 - Something To Hide [very rare old demo]

Only at 0dayrox


STEVE PERRY - Street Talk [Japan Blu-spec CD2 remastered +5]

STEVE PERRY - Street Talk [Japan Blu-spec CD2 remastered +5] full

It's official; the great STEVE PERRY is back. The vocalist announced yesterday via newly created Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts the message: "I know it's been a long time comin'."
Perry will return with a studio album titled 'Traces' on Oct. 5, according to a new Amazon listing / pre order. This would be the former Journey singer's first new solo project since 1994's For the Love of Strange Medicine.
Let's celebrate it with his very good solo albums, remastered with bonus tracks. Here's the first, "Street Talk", in its Japanese Blu-spec CD2 format.

After the back-to-back-to-back Top 10 triumphs of 1980's 'Departure,' 1981's 'Escape,' and 1983's 'Frontiers,' the members of Journey were on top of the world -- and ready to experiment with solo projects. The most high-profile hit of the bunch was "Street Talk", released by singer Steve Perry in April of 1984.
"Street Talk" ended up being like his first album in more ways than one -- it also found him reuniting with a member of Alien Project, his pre-Journey band in the '70s. With different personnel, naturally, came a different sound -- and with Krampf on board, Perry returned organically to his musical roots.

Perry's first solo effort was definitely something quite different and much more rock/pop-oriented than his previous works with Journey, however Steve’s voice is so soulful and magical that at one point you don’t really care about the music.
Just like Jimi Jamison from Survivor sings on their album “Vital Signs” – “it’s the singer, not the song”.

The record's quick birth stood in stark contrast to the painstaking process of finishing Journey's albums, but those fast-paced sessions didn't hurt "Street Talk" on the charts, where it quickly went platinum and spun off the Top Five hit 'Oh Sherrie' along with three more Top 40 singles: 'Foolish Heart,' 'She's Mine,' and 'Strung Out.'

Perry hits hard right from the beginning – the second you hear those warm synthesizer chords and him pouring his soul out with “You should’ve been gone, knowing how I made you feel”, you can’t but be hooked. The explosive hurricane, titled “Oh Sherrie” is by far his greatest success – the track reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on Billboard’s Rock chart. It highlights Steve’s vocal power like no other song, it’s catchy, lyrically-pleasing and on top of that there’s a personal story there – as we all know “Oh Sherrie” was written for his then-girlfriend Sherrie Swafford.

The strength of the single somehow overshadowed the rest of the album, which in my personal opinion contains a lot of uplifting rockers and beautiful soulful tunes.
For instance, the gentle “Foolish Heart” which peaked at #18 on the charts, perfectly represents the vocal and music quality of the album. My personal favorite “She’s Mine” is another romantic, mid-tempo rocker, featuring a lot of screaming soul from Steve.
“You Should be Happy” is another personal treasure-track from the record – the lyrics are wonderful and there’s a special vibe coming out of this song.

STEVE PERRY - Street Talk [Japan Blu-spec CD2 remastered +5] back

Obviously, Steve had a lot of fun writing, recording and producing this album. I could feel how important it was for him to do and try “his own thing”, separately from Journey. He literally put his heart and soul into the making of "Street Talk".
We all know he can definitely hit a note or two, however with this album he also proved that The Voice himself can write timeless songs and produce with skill.
This remastered reissue includes 5 juicy bonus tracks, and the Blu-spec CD2 sounds fantastic.
Highly Recommended

01 - Oh Sherrie
02 - I Believe
03 - Go Away
04 - Foolish Heart
05 - It's Only Love
06 - She's Mine
07 - You Should Be Happy
08 - Running Alone
09 - Captured By The Moment
10 - Strung Out
11 - My My My
12 - Harmony
13 - Makes No Difference
14 - Don't Tell Me Why You're Leavin'
15 - If Only For The Moment

Tracks 11 - 13 are Alien Project demo recordings
Track 14 is the b-side to Oh Sherrie
Track 15 is from the USA for Africa album "We Are the World"

Steve Perry - vocals
Michael Landau, Waddy Wachtel, Craig Hull, Billy Steele - guitar
Craig Krampf, Larrie Londin - drums, percussion
Randy Goodrum - drum programming
Steve Douglas - saxophone
Bob Glaub, Chuck Domanico, Kevin McCormick, Bryan Garofalo - bass
Bill Cuomo, Randy Goodrum - keyboards, piano
Steve Goldstein, Sterling Smith, Duane Hitchings, Robert Greenridge - keyboards



STEVE PERRY - For The Love Of Strange Medicine [Japan Ltd. mini LP remastered +5] Out of Print

STEVE PERRY - For The Love Of Strange Medicine [Japan Ltd. mini LP remastered +5] Out of Print - full

It's official; the great STEVE PERRY is back. The vocalist announced yesterday via newly created Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts the message: "I know it's been a long time comin'."
Perry will return with a studio album titled 'Traces' on Oct. 5, according to a new Amazon listing / pre order. This would be the former Journey singer's first new solo project since 1994's For the Love of Strange Medicine.
Let's celebrate it with his very good solo albums, remastered with bonus tracks. Here's Steve's second and final solo effort "For The Love Of Strange Medicine", in its Japan Ltd. mini-LP release, now out of print.

Between his smash hits with Journey and his Street Talk solo record, Steve Perry spent much of the '80s dominating radio's rock and Top 40 formats, not to mention MTV. So when he lapsed into a prolonged hiatus following Journey's breakup after 1986's Raised on Radio LP, it came as something of a surprise. As the '80s wore on into the '90s, Perry went from arena-filling rock star to rarely seen recluse.
But even if he was working at a slower pace than fans may have liked, Perry hadn't walked away from music, and he proved it with the July 19, 1994, release of his second solo effort, "For The Love Of Strange Medicine".

The sessions found Perry working with a new band whose ranks included keyboardist Paul Taylor (late of Winger), guitarist Lincoln Brewster (who was plucked from obscurity through his association with Perry's friend and former bassist Randy Jackson), and young drummer Moyes Lucas.
All musicians co-wrote many of the songs and contributed backing vocals, working as true band more than a 'solo artist' production.

Of course Top names from the industry are also involved into the recording, such as Toto's Mike Porcaro playng bass, Phil Brown (Fiona, Van Stephenson), exquisite guitarist Michael Landau, Tim Miner and more.
Surprisingly, despite the melodic nature of the album, half the songs are produced by James "Jimbo" Barton, known for his work with metal acts mostly.

The CD mix uptempo melodic rockers with elaborated midtempo rock&pop songs, all commanded by the soulful, heartfelt, beautiful clear voice of Perry.
Opener 'You Better Wait' was a successful single despite the musical climate in 1994 (certified gold), and 'Young Hearts Forever' is a wonderful tune co-written with master Clif Magness.
These are the most commercial songs on the album, but in the inside tracks we find some real gems.

The title cut 'For the Love of Strange Medicine' is another blockbuster with great song structure, lyrical content and more, 'Donna Please' is an emotional, gorgeous and just another top-notch song.
One treat you will get here is both the original version and the Live version (bonus track) of 'Missing You', where you can hear how good crooner Perry is.

STEVE PERRY - For The Love Of Strange Medicine [Japan Ltd. mini LP remastered +5] back

'Somewhere There's Hope' is a true show-stopper for me - reaches into your guts and rips them out. He hits highs and lows that echo off your soul.
And then there's the record's pensive closing track, 'Anyway' a song Perry admitted was inspired by Journey's demise, an acknowledgement and emotional nod to his former band mates.

This remastered version of "For The Love Of Strange Medicine" is the one to treasure. It has a great balanced sound and juicy bonuses, two B-sides from 'You Better Wait +4' CDsingle', a couple of good previously unreleased and that killer live version of 'Missing You' - even better than the studio take.
Highly Recommended

01 - You Better Wait
02 - Young Hearts Forever
03 - I Am
04 - Stand Up (Before It's Too Late)
05 - For The Love Of Strange Medicine
06 - Donna Please
07 - Listen To Your Heart
08 - Tuesday Heartache
09 - Missing You
10 - Somewhere There's Hope
11 - Anyway
12 - If You Need Me, Call Me
13 - One More Time
14 - Can't Stop
15 - Friends Of Mine
16 - Missing You [Live in San Francisco]

12 - from FTLOSM sessions. Re-recorded track of Perry's pre-Journey band, 'Alien Project'.
13 - from FTLOSM sessions, outtake
both tracks only appeared on 'You Better Wait +4' CDsingle, 1994.
14 - Can't Stop (previously unreleased)
15 - Friends Of Mine (previously unreleased)
both tracks from 'Against The Wall', the unfinished album from 1988
16.Missing You [Live in San Francisco] (previously unreleased)

Steve Perry - vocals
Lincoln Brewster - guitars, background vocals
Paul Taylor - keyboards, background vocals
Moyes Lucas - drums, background vocals
Larry Kimpel - bass
Mike Porcaro - bass
Phil Brown - bass
Tim Miner - bass, piano, keyboards, background vocals
Dallas Symphony Orchestra
Michael Landau - guitars on "Anyway"
Alexander Brown, Carmen Carter, Jean McClain - backing vocals

Out Of Print


Monday, August 13, 2018

HOUSE OF LORDS - Anthology [Unreleased Songs, New Versions & Live] (2015)

HOUSE OF LORDS - Anthology [Unreleased Songs, New Versions & Live] full

Many melodic hard rock fans didn't take notice that HOUSE OF LORDS' album "Anthology" isn't just the usual 'Best Of' studio hits, instead, this is a stellar compilation of unreleased tracks, rare pre-production demos and live recordings.
Produced, engineered and mixed by the band's original drummer Ken Mary, the sound quality of the material included into "Anthology" is top notch.

House Of Lords' foundations lay in Giuffria, led by titular keyboardist Gregg Giuffria. After being dropped by MCA after their second album Silk And Steel, the band started demoing songs for a tentative third album.
While shopping for a new deal, the band caught the attention of Kiss' Gene Simmons, who happened to be starting his own label at the time, Simmons Records. The famous bassist enjoyed what he heard, but would only sign them on the condition of starting a new band from the scratch.

So the remaining Giuffria members, namely Gregg Giuffria, guitarist Lanny Cordola and bass player Chuck Wright, would enlist the talents of Alice Cooper drummer Ken Mary.
Connecticut-born James Christian was then brought in at the suggestion of - and previous companion in L.A. Rocks - Chuck Wright.

But before the release of House Of Lords self-titled debut, there was a lot of rehearsal, songwriting sessions and pre-production recordings. Many of these songs are here in "Anthology".
We have here two newly recorded versions of 'I Wanna Be Loved' (the single that started it all) and the hit 'Can't Find My Way Home'.

HOUSE OF LORDS - Anthology [Unreleased Songs, New Versions & Live] disc

Then we have the pre-production demos from 1988-1990. There are some real belters on here, especially the unreleased tracks.
'Dangerous Woman' is a killer bluesy hard rocker plenty of harmony vocals and swirling keyboards, performed by talented keyboardist John Purdell (Heart, Ted Nugent), who also co-wrote the song.
'Hold Back The Night' is monster power ballad that I can't believe the band never included into any of their albums, while 'Hero's Song' is a slow tune with great atmospheres.

Another superb unreleased track is 'The Legend Lives On', composed by Wright and Bruce Gowdy (Unruly Child), a fantastic keyboard-driven AOR tune with a classic Giuffria feel on it. This song alone worth this CD. AWESOME tune.
'Bad Bones' is a classic bluesy hard rock track which brings to mind Mr. Big, then 'Beyond The Pale' is a driving rocker with some Whitesnake on it, with a busy guitar work.

HOUSE OF LORDS - Anthology [Unreleased Songs, New Versions & Live] back

There's different, pre-production demo versions of 'Chains Of Love', 'Kiss Of Fire' and 'Sahara', a rare experimental take on 'American Babylon' done with Greek instruments, a very good live recordings done in The Netherlands in 1989.

"Anthology" is a must have melodic hard rock album, showcasing how talented House Of Lords where at the time, even in a pre-production stage.
A Must

01 - I Wanna Be Loved [New Version]
02 - Can't Find My Way Home [New Version]
03 - Dangerous Woman [Unreleased]
04 - Hold Back The Night [Unreleased]
05 - Chains Of Love [pre-Production Demo]
06 - The Legend Lives On [Unreleased]
07 - Sahara [pre-Production Demo]
08 - Hero's Song [Unreleased]
09 - Kiss Of Fire [pre-Production Demo]
10 - Bad Bones [Unreleased]
11 - Beyond The Pale [Unreleased]
12 - Looking For Strange [Live 1989]
13 - Edge Of Your Life [Live 1989]
14 - Lanny's Solo [Live 1989]
15 - Under Blue Skies [Live 1989]
16 - American Babylon [Experimental Version]

James Christian - lead vocals
Gregg Giuffria - keyboards
Lanny Cordola - guitars
Chuck Wright - bass
Ken Mary - drums, percussion
Doug Aldrich - guitar
John Purdell - keyboards



CHAS SANDFORD - Wag More Bark Less

CHAS SANDFORD - Wag More Bark Less

AOR connoisseurs & collectors already know (and own) CHAS SANDFORD's 1982 debut 'Parallax View'. But for the major audience, the name of this Georgia native is a total mystery. Well, let me tell you; Chas Sandford is a treasure of a songwriter behind such hits as 'Missing You' (John Waite), 'What Kind Of Man Would I Be' (Chicago) or 'Talk To Me' (Stevie Nicks), just to name a few.
The saying goes that most artists have an entire lifetime to make their first album, and six months to come up with the second.
For veteran songwriter / producer / engineer Chas Sandford, it took 30 years for his sophomore album, "Wag More, Bark Less", the long-awaited follow up to his debut which came out on Elektra/Asylum.

Sandford has enlisted an all star line-up of session musicians here, including bassist Davis Santos [Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, John Fogerty, Billy Joel], keyboard player James Matchack [Chicago] and drummer Nick Buda [Taylor Swift, Jewel, Edwin McCain], with special appearances by friends and colleagues including Chicago’s Bill Champlin, Survivor’s Jim Peterik, recording artist/slide guitarist Lee Roy Parnell and singer/songwriter Nicole Witt on background vocals.

"Wag More, Bark Less" is delicious from start to finish.
From the opening notes of "Let Love Back In This House" all the way through to the end of the album, Sandford proves himself to be a singer worthy of any song that might come from his pen.
He also comes across as very versatile, with a style that ranges from adult Rock & Pop to classy smooth AOR with a little bit of Americana sprinkled in.

Rather than single out a few cuts here and tell you that they are highlights, I will tell you up front that each track could be a highlight. There are no clunkers here.
Some of my favorites are "The Best Of Times", "Broken" and the ballad showcase "I Believed", a clear statement of Chas' wonderful vocal performance and ability to craft memorable melodies.

While each cut is impressive on its own merits, I wouldn't rule out his getting some attention for the biting "Love Can Really Mess You Up". It’s one of those type performances that can really send an artist into the stratosphere - a place where he Chas Sandford truly deserves to be.

CHAS SANDFORD - Wag More Bark Less - back

On "Wag More, Bark Less", Sandford weaves strong words into masterful lyrics about love, loss, hurt and pain and the emotional expression along with his strong, raspy, sexy voice, brings every song on the album to life. Besides, I love the varied instrumentation on the different songs - no two alike on this album.

We're talking about talent here; Chas can sing, play, write, perform, and produce… he is the total package. Honestly, I can’t find a cut on the album that I don’t like. There are no filler tracks here.
Exquisitely recorded & produced by himself, "Wag More, Bark Less" was silently, independently released, but truly deserve your attention before it gets out of print.
Highly Recommended

01 - Let Love Back In This House
02 - The Best Of Times
03 - Someday Susan
04 - I Believed
05 - Broken
06 - My Favorite Regret
07 - I'll Be There
08 - Whenever I See Your Smile
09 - Waiting For The Sun
10 - Love Can Really Mess You Up
11 - Because Of You
12 - It's Changing

Chas Sandford: Vocals, Electric & Acoustic Guitars, Piano & Keyboards
Davis Santos, Tim Marks, Dave Pomeroy: Bass
Nick Buda: Drums, Percussion
Jim Peterik: Guitar, Backing Vocals
James Matchack: Keyboards & Programming
Bill Champlin: Organ, Backing Vocals
Kenny Greenberg: Guitar
Steve Hornbeak: Piano & Backing vocals
Kevin McKendree: Piano
Lee Roy Parnell: Slide Guitar
John Catching, David Angell: Strings
Nicole Witt: Harmony Vocals
Tiffany Goss & Greg Barnhill: Backing vocals



DEVIL CITY ANGELS - Devil City Angels [retail CD]

DEVIL CITY ANGELS - Devil City Angels full

One of you asked for this album, criminally underrated when released and featuring one of the best vocalists from the new generation. They are a new band, but members of DEVIL CITY ANGELS have an impressive musical pedigree.
The group featuring L.A. Guns‘ Tracii Guns on guitar, Quiet Riot‘s Rudy Sarzo on bass, Poison‘s Rikki Rockett on drums, and Brandon Gibbs (Cheap Thrill) on vocals, released this self-titled debut plenty of rocking songs.

Devil City Angels issued an EP at the tail end of 2014 (featured at this blog) and proceeded to play a handful of select live dates, then reconvened to write and record their self-titled album.
Legendary bassist Rudy Sarzo now takes over for Eric Brittingham (Cinderella) who played on the album but departed shortly after the recording wrapped up.

The album is a great mix of classic and contemporary hard rock, there’s no flash like we’ve seen in Guns’ or Rockett’s previous bands. The songs are incredibly melodic, catchy and memorable which makes for a fun listening experience.

DEVIL CITY ANGELS - Devil City Angels [retail CD] disc

Devil City Angels launched the album with “Boneyard” which hit the mark sonically and lyrically. Brandon Gibbs has a powerful soulful voice and a brilliant sense of melody that sets him apart from his contemporaries. The best example of this is heard on the opener, “I’m Living”, and what I believe is one of the best ballads from the decade, “Goodbye Forever.”

There’s not a dull moment on "Devil City Angels" which is a pleasant surprise in an age where older, established musicians tend to satisfied with one or two good tracks for an album and proceed to overload the rest of the album with subpar material.

The most unique track is “All I Need” which features a Beatles-esque chorus and a super sappy, poppy feel to it — yet it works. Devil City Angels also covered the Mike Chapman penned “Back to the Drive” which was made famous by Suzie Quatro, and the result is very good.

DEVIL CITY ANGELS - Devil City Angels [retail CD] back

If you’re searching for a solid hard rock record performed by seasoned musicians plenty of nice twists, turns, chockful of melody that’s brilliantly executed, check out Devil City Angels’ self-titled album pronto.
Thank you Devil City Angels for putting out such a great kick ass rock n’ roll album. The American Rock music world has been missing something this good in a long time.

01. Numb
02. All My People
03. Boneyard
04. I'm Living
05. No Angels
06. Goodbye Forever
07. Ride With Me
08. All I Need
09. Back To The Drive
10. Bad Decisions

Tracii Guns (L.A. Guns) - Guitar
Rudy Sarzo (Quiet Riot, Ozzy, Whitesnake) - Bass, Vocals
Rikki Rockett (Poison) - Drums, Vocals
Brandon Gibbs (Cheap Thrill) - Vocals, Guitar



Sunday, August 12, 2018

HOUSE OF LORDS - ST [Axe Killer remaster Ltd. Edition +1] Out Of Print

BLACK ACES - Shot In The Dark [European CD version +3] (2016) full

After the second album by HOUSE OF LORDS featured here, some of you asked for the band's awesome self-titled debut, also remastered by Axe Killer Records (now re-branded Bad Reputation).
Essential into any '80s Melodic Hard Rock / AOR collection, this reissue of "House Of Lords" includes a bonus track, a different, remixed version of the song 'Love Don't Lie', written by the great Stan Bush.

Formed from the ashes of Giuffria, featuring keyboardist Gregg Giuffria, House Of Lords signed a deal with Kiss bassist Gene Simmons' own label (and distributed by RCA Records) for two albums.
Nobody was calling them a “supergroup”, but most of the members had been around the block more than once, as example vocalist James Christian who worked for many as background singer and songwriter.

Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick (with whom the band would later tour) co-wrote the song "Slip of the Tongue". Many other popular hard rock musicians has contributed to the songwriting of the songs on the album, including Stan Bush, David Glen Eisley of Giuffria, Johnny Warman and Mandy Meyer of Asia.
As plus, Jeff Scott Soto can be found on backing vocals throughout the whole album. Previously Soto sung with Christian in a project called L.A. Rocks, hence the connection.

Lanny Cordola played guitar on the prior Giuffria LP, and continued on to House Of Lords. Bassist Chuck Wright had a stint in Quiet Riot. Drummer Ken Mary kept time during Alice Cooper’s metal phase.
All they needed was a singer, and they found a great one in James Christian, who today is the sole remaining original member of House Of Lords. They signed to Gene Simmons’ imprint, and got legendary producer Andy Johns behind the mixing desk.
All the ingredients were in place.

The keyboard heavy opening on “Pleasure Palace” shows that the Giuffria-the band spirit will be present, and this is a glossy '80s production. James Christian comes across as a full-lunged, well rounded singer. He’s able to sing with a little of blue eyed soul, and he’s capable of the screams too. The feature that actually sets the song apart is the keyboards, very gothic and European sounding, but not wimpy.

“I Wanna Be Loved” was the first single / video, an easy choice being midtempo with a shout-along chorus. It's a killer song, one among the buch of killer this album packs. Heaps of backing vocals thicken up the mix, and Lanny Cordola plays a tasteful albeit standard guitar solo on top.
“Edge of Your Life” serves as a keyboard power-ballad, and a dramatic one at that. The musicianship is stellar and the arrangement is expert, but the standout performer is James Christian.

RICHIE KOTZEN - I'm Coming Out (2011)tracks

Since you need a bar room blaster for the dudes, “Lookin’ For Strange” fits the bill. Instruments aflame, and with obvious inspiration from the Van Halen shuffle of old, “Lookin’ For Strange” is nonetheless a ton ‘o fun. E
Then there's “Love Don’t Lie”, one of the greatest power ballads of all time, penned by Stan Bush. An this reissue the bonus track is the remix version of the song, edited down and remixed by David Thoener for a single release. This mix was used for the music video as well, and it's quite different

Rock and roll resumes with “Slip of the Tongue”, a title that David Coverdale would use a year later. High octane, full speed ahead, this is House of Lords doing the shred. The musicianship speaks for itself and you can hear clear Whitesnake and Thin Lizzy influences.
The fast pace sets up “Hearts of the World” very well via contrast. From here, the album becomes more progressive, dramatic, and bombastic.

“Hearts of the World” is AOR perfection, choppy with caverns of keyboards and waterfalls of gang vocals. I love it. This is a perfect example of why I love this musical genre so much.
“Under Blue Skies” follow this with bagpipes and majestic keyboard horns. It’s another dramatic, melodic winner with progressive qualities. The outro has those “na na na na na” vocals that all but guarantee you’ll be singing along.
“Call My Name” makes it three in a row, though it changes the forecast to sunny. Bright and positive, “Call My Name” is still a big sounding song, with the gang vocals and guitar shreddery that you’ve come to expect.

RICHIE KOTZEN - I'm Coming Out (2011)tracks

Cordola gets the chance to show a lil’ bit (a minute) of classical guitar chops as an intro to “Jealous Heart”, the last of 10 tracks. This is a monnster midtempo AOR / MHR tune that I always found similar to some Journey. It doesn't matter, it's a fantastic song on its own.

"House Of Lords" is close to Melodic Hard Rock / AOR perfection. It's bombastic, catchy, big, but also meaty, elaborated. It's a pillar in the '80s works for the genre, and a must have.
This Axe Killer remaster - not easy to find - is fabulous, done several years ago in the 'old school' way but darn, it's terrific. The difference with the other CD versions is simply abysmal.

You've seen it first here, at 0dayrox

01 - Pleasure Palace
02 - I Wanna Be Loved
03 - Edge Of Your Life
04 - Lookin' For Strange
05 - Love Don't Lie
06 - Slip Of the Tongue
07 - Hearts Of The World
08 - Under Blue Skies
09 - Call My Name
10 - Jealous Heart
11 - Love Don't Lie (Remix)

James Christian - lead vocals
Gregg Giuffria - keyboards
Lanny Cordola - guitars
Chuck Wright - bass
Ken Mary - drums, percussion
additional musicians:
Jeff Scott Soto - backing vocals



SHELTER (Joe Lamont) - First Stop [Rock Candy remaster] (2018)

SHELTER- First Stop [Rock Candy remaster] (2018) full

Finally someone did justice and remastered one of the greatest and most requested AOR albums of the '80s: Rock candy Records just reissued "First Stop", the only album by SHELTER, a great slice of first half of the '80s American AOR.

The road to fame and fortune is littered with fallen heroes, musicians that just couldn’t get a shot at the big time, languishing in the shadows, forgotten and broken by a fickle turn of fate. Many of these artists came very close to realizing their dream but were let down by circumstances that were entirely out of their control.

Shelter worked so hard to score a major label record deal, but this scenario was exactly what happened to them, and the band’s sole album was totally ignored by the label and not promoted.
Pick up by Polydor Records, this classy East Coast outfit were signed via a production deal with the owner of the famous Hit Factory recording studio in Manhattan. It was, for a short moment in time, a dream come true.

The band had and impressive style, like a knock out combination of Foreigner, LeRoux, Harlequin, Prophet and Preview, that's meaning classy Pompy AOR sound.
Issued in 1982, "First Stop" showcased a sound that was fast becoming the biggest thing on US radio, and Shelter appeared to be act that could step up to the plate and easily knock it out of the park. Sadly, it was not to be.

SHELTER- First Stop [Rock Candy remaster] (2018) disc

The album was released with virtually no marketing or publicity, crash landing with the muted fizzle of a damp firework. However, import copies made their way to Europe, generating a seed of appreciation that, tragically, in the pre Internet age, could not be capitalised on.
Eventually, the band split up, but their music lives on; tracks such as ‘On The Line’, ‘Tricks’ and ‘Who Do You Love’ resonate with pure spit and polish.

Including the impressive vocals of frontman Joe Lamente (ex-Steeplechase and who will release a stupendous AOR album as Joe Lamont in 1985, featured HERE) the album is full of wonderful tunes.
'On The Line' opens with all the drive and urgency of good Melodic Rock, 'So Glad I Found You' is pure AOR magic, and 'The Way I Feel' is a great ballad.
More quality pomp AOR comes with 'Tricks' and 'Why', and the pumping bass lines and 'those' synths tuens 'Foolish Lovers' a personal favorite.

SHELTER- First Stop [Rock Candy remaster] (2018) back

If you never head SHELTER's "First Stop", this very good remastered reissue gives the chance to listen to it in all its glory, if you already got this little gem, it's time to update it with this fresh sounding treatment.
Whichever the case, "First Stop" is essential in your '80s AOR collection.

You've seen it first here, at 0dayrox

01 - On The Line
02 - So Glad I Found You
03 - The Way I Feel
04 - Who Do You Love
05 - Why
06 - Underneath Your Make-Up
07 - Shelter
08 - Tricks
09 - Foolish Lovers
10 - Because Of Love

Joe Lamente (vocals)
Russ De Salvo (guitar)
Peter Valentine (keyboards)
Carl Bova (bass, backing vocals)
Billy Messinetti (drums, backing vocals)



ENUFF Z'NUFF - Enuff Z'Nuff [Rock Candy Remastered +2]

ENUFF Z'NUFF - Enuff Z'Nuff [Rock Candy Remastered +2]full

Rock Candy Records has 'Remastered & Reloaded' the two first major label releases of ENUFF Z'NUFF, both really enjoyable pieces of melodic hard rock music.
Their 1989 self-titled "Enuff Z'Nuff" was marketed as a hair-metal album, but actually shares more common ground with power-pop / melodic rock luminaries Cheap Trick and Sweet than with the lipstick-and-leather crowd.

Formed near the sprawling metropolis of Chicago during the mid 80s, this four man outfit featured two central characters in songwriters Donnie Vie and Chip Z’Nuff. Brothers in all but name, they were feted as the Lennon and McCartney of the hard rock scene.

Signed to Atco Records in a whirl of activity, the band recorded this, their groundbreaking major debut album on home turf crafting one of the best albums of the era. A record so good, that even hard nosed rock critics for Rolling Stone magazine hailed it as a sensation.
Musically the band mined a luxurious fusion of melodic hard rock and catchy power pop. It was as if Cheap Trick had joined forces with Bon Jovi.

"Enuff Z'Nuff" boasts one of the best power-pop singles of the late '80s with "New Thing," which features Donnie Vie's raspy vocals set against a backdrop of whimsical guitar-powered melody.
"For Now" captures more of the same magic that makes this album so refreshing, while the hit "Fly High Michelle" reveals the band's fondness for psychedelic ballads.

The contemplative "I Could Never Be Without You" is wonderful, while tracks such as ‘Hot Little Summer Girl’, ‘Kiss The Clown’ and the epic ‘In The Groove’ took a tired format and utterly reinvented the the melodic rock sound of the late '80s.

ENUFF Z'NUFF - Enuff Z'Nuff [Rock Candy Remastered +2] back

Great remaster by Rock Candy on an album which deserves much more respect, it's a really, really melodic and catchy effort. Additionally, there's 2 bonus tracks recorded live showing Enuff Z'Nuff's power on stage.
Highly Recommended

01 - New Thing
02 - She Wants More
03 - Fly High Michelle
04 - Hot Little Summer Girl
05 - In The Groove
06 - Little Indian Angel
07 - For Now
08 - Kiss The Clown
09 - I Could Never Be Without You
10 - Finger On The Trigger
11 - Fly High Michelle (Live)
12 - New Thing (Live)

Donnie Vie – lead vocals, guitars, keyboards
Chip Z'Nuff – bass, guitars, vocals
Derek Frigo – lead guitar
Vikki Fox – drums



Saturday, August 11, 2018


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DON DOKKEN - Up From The Ashes [Japan HR-HM 1000 reissue series] (2018)

DON DOKKEN - Up From The Ashes [Japan HR-HM 1000 reissue series] (2018) full

Universal Music Japan has started this year a curious but more than welcomed campaign: the reissue of long time out of print albums from their catalog titled 'HR/HM 1000', that meaning Hard Rock / Heavy Metal at the price of 1000 Yen = about 9 USD.
One of the very interesting albums from the series, is without a doubt "Up From The Ashes", the first DON DOKKEN solo record.

One of the greatest exponents from the US hard rock scene during the Eighties, Dokken imploded in 1989 not with a bang but a whimper. George Lynch and Mick Brown began Lynch Mob, while Jeff Pilson formed War & Peace.
Don Dokken meanwhile was cooking up a hot new band. The only issue was the name. The ex-members, who owned a stake in the Dokken name, refused to let Don use it. They also shot down the names “Dokken II” and “DKN”.
Don was understandably upset that he couldn’t use his own last name for his name, so he opted to bill himself as Don Dokken the solo artist.

His solo band was a killer. Fresh out of Europe with a smash hit album under his belt, John Norum joined on guitar. Billy White from the metal band Watchtower was the second guitar player, giving Dokken a double guitar lineup (or three if you count Don himself).
King Diamond’s Mikkey Dee was aboard on drums, several years away from joining Motorhead (and now Scorpions). Rounding out the band was veteran Accept bassist Peter Baltes, who played with Dokken in their earliest days.
A true international line-up: American, Norwegian, Swedish, German...

With all this burning anger coupled with tremendous instrumental firepower, one might expect Don to come back rockin’ harder than ever.
His solo album "Up From The Ashes" is of course Dokken-the band influenced, but with an emphasis on melodic rock. It did however continue the core Dokken sound, with some biting and very Lynch-like guitar riffs.

Entering with the kind of jagged riffs that made Dokken famous, “Crash ‘N Burn” sounds almost exactly like Don’s old band. Hard rock, smooth vocals, and six-string acrobatics. There is no familiar Jeff Pilson backing vocal, but Peter Baltes and John Norum get the job done. The incredibly impressive guitar histrionics are clearly not George Lynch, but fans will love what John and Billy White cooked up.
A lot of "Up From The Ashes" fits into a nice little hard rock box, a little smoother around than edges than classic Dokken, but strong as ever.

A strong follow-up called “1000 Miles Away” sits in a comfortable midtempo rock zone. It’s not a ballad, it’s not a rocker, but it’s somewhere in between. Hit material.
The album’s single “Mirror Mirror” is one of my favorites, and I don't know but the main riff remindme of Van Halen. When Some Nights” has a similar vibe to “1000 Miles Away”, and there are many others. No real weak songs abide within.

Another favorite of mine is “Living a Lie”, a sharp Norum co-write with a Europe-like sound. Also up there, “Give It Up” is a brief blast of rock. “Stay” leans in a slightly more poppy melodic rock direction, successfully so.
"When Love Finds a Fool" is the only ballad on the CD, co-written with former Deep Purple and Black Sabbath singer Glenn Hughes, who also provided backing vocals for the song.

DON DOKKEN - Up From The Ashes [Japan HR-HM 1000 reissue series] (2018) back

With "Up From The Ashes", Don re-established himself. Nobody could accuse him of leaning on George Lynch. It really sounds like a Dokken-the band continuation, but with refreshed players.
Norum shines all over the record with killer riffs and hot solos, and all songs boast some impressive musical contributions from all the players.
This album never was remastered, but this Japanese reissue sounds great. It may be the new digital transfer technique - which augment the signal / Dynamic Range.
HIGHLY Recommended

01 - Crash 'n' Burn
02 - 1000 Miles Away
03 - When Smoe Nights
04 - Forever
05 - Living A Lie
06 - When Love Finds A Fool
07 - Give It Up
08 - Mirror Mirror
09 - Stay
10 - Down In Flames
11 - The Hunger

Don Dokken – lead vocals, guitar
John Norum – lead guitar, acoustic guitar, backing vocals
Billy White – lead guitar, acoustic guitar, backing vocals
Peter Baltes – bass, acoustic guitar, backing vocals
Mikkey Dee – drums
Glenn Hughes – backing vocals on "When Love Finds a Fool"
Tony Franklin – bass intro on "Stay"
Ken Mary - Drums on "The Hunger"



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