Sunday, September 28, 2014
This album has huge melodic hooks, choruses that invite singing along and many of these songs would have been a staple of FM radio if released thirty years prior. “We set out to write good songs, the only criteria was that all of us liked them” said Nigel Bailey. While the band sounds really tight, the focal point of most of the songs are Vinny Burns’ stellar guitar work and Nigel Bailey’s ‘Lou Graham meets John Wetton’ vocals. Musically, most of the songs are in the vein of Asia, early Foreigner and the Brian Howe-fronted lineup of Bad Company along with hints of Bryan Adams and Whitesnake around the edges. With an album full of anthemic rock, as one would expect, a number of songs are about girls.
The disc starts out with “Trouble in a Red Dress” (the first single from the disc) which is a melodic AOR rocker with solid guitar work and a bit grittier sound that brings the 80’s AOR sound into the present. This is followed by “Hold Me Now”, which is a Bryan Adams style guitar-driven tale about girls and summer. “Twisted Soul” starts with a slower intro before the driving atmospheric rock kicks in. The song sounds like a Foreigner number with a bit more punch in the guitar. “Winter Sun” is an old-school rock ballad which is powered by a big guitar sounds and upfront melodic vocals. Picking up the pace with “Just a Man” and “Holy Water”, either of these numbers could easily become the second single from the disc. Both of these numbers are mid-tempo rockers with the hooks that stick with you long after the song has ended.
One of the most diverse numbers on the disc is the eastern-influence “Kathmandu”. The band seems to take a page from 90’s metal with some slashing guitar lines while never losing its sense of melody. The other number that shows the band willing to take some risks is “Sicilian Kiss”, the final track on the disc, which is a moody, guitar-driven instrumental with strong leads and a slight hint of flamingo on the outro.