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AOR HEAVEN ::: N E W S L E T T E R ::: 14/02/2020


Howdy melodic rockers,

Time to get pissed again, cause even if we have received most of the expected new titles for this week we didn't got everything what should have delivered to us (and what you're expecting from us!).

Since quite sometimes the German distributor of the Frontiers label is struggeling to deliver what we have ordered from them. You can be sure that we're still ordering nice quantities of minimum 100 units from priority releases like Black Swan this month, but if we only get a third of the required quantity and absolutely no copies of the Hardline CD/DVD we do have a problem, cause we can't deliver what we have promised. We're in touch now with the label to solve this matter, cause as I said, the situation is pretty much useless !

Ok, let's concentrate on some hot new titles from the likes of H.e.a.t., Collateral Robert Hart, Confess and on top two new releases from the popular Lost U.S./U.K. jewels series.

Tickets for H.e.a.t. festival 2020 are also now available through our website. The festival takes place at the Scala in Ludwigsburg due November 28th/29th. Bands confirmed so far incl. GLASS TIGER, HAREM SCAREM, KINGDOM COME, ALIEN, NEWMAN, 91 SUITE, ROYAL HUNT, VICTORY, OSUKARU, 20 DARK SEVEN, FIGHTER V, NIGHT LASER & more to come !


have a great week

Georg & Monika




JESSE DAMON - Damon's Rage

A: 11 € B: 13 €

The SILENT RAGE-frontmann JESSE DAMON puts out solo albums on a regular basis for years and album number seven is probably the best so far. Melodic hard rock with the typical slightly raspy voice of the American and hook-laden compositions you would expect. “Play To Win“, “Love Gone Wild“ oder “Wildest Dreams“, to mention a few songs only, take you by storm. And then there’s the epic “Flyin’ Dutchman“ which adds a little bit of a different flavor to the record. Produced by AOR legend Paul Sabu who also co-wrote two songs and sang powerful backing vocals. Damon and Sabu are working together for a long time, a match made in heaven for sure in terms of writing and recording. A cool hybrid of hard and melodic rock that will easily please fans of KISS, HOUSE OF LORDS or SILENT RAGE, of course.


listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hO-GwD5c3Xk


SHAFT OF STEEL - Steel Heartbeat

A: 11 € B: 13 €

AOR from London/UK? Non-existent? Well, it it! The five-piece SHAFT Of STEEL, who put out a highly praised EP some years ago, are back for good and deliver an amazing debut full of timeless AOR anthems. The nucleus of the band are Alex Markham on guitar and vocalist Robert Fenning, who developed from a heavy metal band to a pure AOR act. The emotional ballad “Body And Mind“ or the WORK OF ART-like “Touching You Everyday“ are ear candy of the finest sort. But the absolute highlight is “Everytime I Look At You“. What an AOR / melodic rock gem it is! Don’t be mistaken by the rather heavy metal-like artwork and band name. Melodies, keyboards and lots of positive vibes rule here. Backing vocals and mastering by Dennis Ward (ex PINK CREAM 69). Great record!


listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u3P_q34NyUk



H.E.A.T. - H.e.a.t. II

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

Being the sixth studio effort already but nevertheless the album title fits in a way because it’s basically the first with Erik Grönwall (v), who made the band sound harder, to fully connect with the first two releases. Extremely melodic but with a good portion of heaviness and an exceptional sense for great arrangements. It’s the fourth with Grönwall but it sounds like a fresh start. The best songs since the legendary first two releases. Well done! H.E.A.T. are (really) back for good!


watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kiv3-1Ync2o

EKLYPCE - Passion After Midnight +4 (digitally remastered)

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

Vol. 7 of the much sought after "Lost U.S. jewels" series sees the release of little known US act EKLYPCE.  Led by vocalist Bob Wheeler, their debut album “Passion After Midnight” was released independently on vinyl format during 1989 and it’s a treasure trove of Bon Jovi and Surgin-esque AOR.  Whether it’s the surging “Make Me Feel Right”, the stabbing keyboard brilliance of “I’m Only Me” or “Lady Love” with its liberal sprinkling of keyboards, this is an album for the AOR “connoisseurs” / Melodic Rock collectors, a true “lost jewel” that has been fully restored and remastered incl. 4 bonus tracks, liner notes by Rob Evans and as usually strictly limited to 500 copies.

listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O2lNgRjLdGE

SAVANNAH NIX - a LONg time ago DOes Not mean f**k all (dig. rem.)

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

Founded in London during 1987 and originally composed by Swiss-Spanish vocalist Dave Rubio (later replaced by Marc Huckle), SAVANNAH NIX officially released two demo-tapes during the 1988-1989 period, with a third one and some more songs recorded and never released to the public.  With a strong image and a very intriguing sound influenced by bands like Skid Row, Dokken, Motley Crue and Ratt, SAVANNAH NIX played the England live-circuit for some years, trying, in the meantime, to find the right label-deal, that never arrived.  The “Lost UK Jewel” CD will featured all the material ever recorded by the band, taken from the original master-tapes. Digitally remastered by the band and strictly limited to 500 copies.

listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0k0w10N1BDM


A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

“Pure“ is a timeless melodic rock record with lots of classic rock and also obvious pop elements. ROBERT HART (v, MANFRED MANN’S EARTH BAND, ex BAD COMPANY) brings the songs to live using his slightly raspy voice. “Sensational“ is a true eighties flavored song with lots of groove while the melodic “This Is The Night“ is more of a potential hit single. Backing vocals and production by the mighty Steve Overland (FM).


listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_FFjLjZfg3w

COLLATERAL - Collateral

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

British four-piece rock band Collateral are set to release their highly anticipated eponymous debut album after creating a decent hype by winning several competitions like the one from Camden rock festival. So – the Kent-based band is comprised of Angelo Tristan (lead vocals, guitar), Todd Winger (guitar), Jack Bentley-Smith (bass) and Ben Atkinson (drums). And so to their first full-length album. Although the band have been quite tight-lipped about the new songs, their summertime exposure will have give people a good idea as to what to expect. Collateral have created a quality album that undoubtedly draws on a number of sources, notably American Stadium-rock influences such as Bon Jovi and Nickelback.

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5H8dE94MgsM

CONFESS - Burn 'Em All

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

Swedish sleaze rockers Confess consisting of lead vocalist John Elliot, drummer Samael, bassist Ludwig, and guitarists Blomman and Pontus are back on track with their third album "Burn 'Em All". Confess become, along the years, one of the leading forces in the Swedish sleaze / hard rock scene. With their top selling album "Jail" and the 2017 release "Haunters" they’ve been touring all over the world in the last 6 years, hitting countries all over Europe and the US. The Swedish five pieces combo took some time off to write the hits for their third official studio album. It’s for sure their most honest and well crafted release so far. Some would say it’s the perfect mix between their debut album “Jail” and the follow-up “Haunters“.

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqwrd5cRJsU

HARDLINE - Life Live + DVD

A: 14,5 € B: 17,5 €

HARDLINE, pretty active recently and having a stable line-up around original member Johnny Gioeli (v, AXEL RUDI PELL) for years, recording and playing live a lot. Recorded at the 2019 edition of the Frontiers Rock Festival, the American-Italian five-piece takes you on a journey through all of their albums with songs of their legendary 1992 debut being the absolute highlights. A guest appearance of original drummer Deen Castronovo completes the picture here. Great stuff!


watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M40TxMiHfnc


STARMEN - Welcome To My World

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

Quite Interesting band from Sweden whose members hide their faces under star-shaped makeup a la KISS. Led by the former singer of Sweden's The Poodles and Cleopatra Kristian Hermanson, the four starmen recorded their debut "Kiss The Sky" in 2018. All of them, with the only exception of Lindgren, were part of Cleopatra and currently play in the Swedish KISS tribute band Kissed. Starmen plays classic Hard Rock and incorporates AOR, Pop melodies and the occasional modern edge in a mix that is mainly influenced by KISS, Whitesnake and Deep Purple. What has really sparked my interest is how solid the delivery is and how well crafted, vintage and groovy the songs are. High quality stuff from Sweden, don't miss it !

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MtBhpgC1_M8

BLACK SWAN - Shake The World

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

Project or not, this “supergroup“ with Robin McAuley (v, MSG), Jeff Wilson (b, DOKKEN, FOREIGNER), Reb Beach (g, WINGER, WHITESNAKE) und Matt Starr (d, ACE FREHLEY, MR.BIG) is a dream come true. Great hard rock, powerful production and pretty heavy. “Big Disaster“ is rather MSG-like whereas “Make It There“ would perfectly fit the FOREIGNER-rooster. A cool, comparatively rough Rock’n’Roll record assembled by excellent protagonists.


watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hNGOVHOHbGw

MALLET - Rock'n Roll Heroes (digi pack)

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

MALLET celebrate their fortieth anniversary, actually with their twelfth album these days. “Rock’n’Roll Heroes“ is dynamic classic rock with a great sense for melodies (e.g. “Eighties Coming Back“ or “The Ocean“). A record which creates fun but definitely does not offer anything new. But that’s not their aim, of course. Fans of WIG WAM, STOP STOP or BLACK DIAMOND should take a listen. Basically all rock’n’roll cliches are covered here, for sure.


listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eHE55KxsTTY

RE-MACHINED - Wheels Of Time

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

Heavy rock with a lot of NWOBHM from..yes, from Germany (Mainz) is offered on “Wheels Of Time“. Heavy guitars, energetic vocals with a slice of Udo Dirkschneider (ex ACCEPT, U.D.O) as well as numerous references to the likes of SAXON, IRON MAIDEN or even (classic) SCORPIONS. This records sounds like the past 25 years have never happened, which is pretty cool. No covers, no keyboards, no fuzz whatsoever but plenty of passion. One highlight is the neck-breaking “Go To Hell“.


watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fla7HBdZe08


A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

Italian band SECRET RULE have always been delivering good music but “Against“, their fifth album, is not only their best effort so far, but also one that takes no prisoners. Female singer Angela Di Vincenzo knows how to use her „instrument“ pretty well and the songwriting combines melodic and progressive metal with gothic elements for the most part. A pristine but powerful production completes the picture here. Fans of e.g. WITHIN TEMPTATION or THEATER OF TRAGEDY be alerted!


watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WrIF4mvxj9M

SEVEN SPIRES - Emerald Seas

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

SEVEN SPIRES, according to their label Frontiers Records, are one of the hopefuls for the future of hard rock and metal. “Emerald Seas“, the sophomore record of the Americans, offers exciting songwriting at times and bits and pieces of different genres such as progressive metal, folk or AOR. Females voice Adrienne Cowan who also fronts SASCHA PAETH’S MASTER OF CEREMONY, has got a stunning voice. Not a record to listen to while ironing but that’s rather positive, isn’t it?


watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l10HOohy1Eo


A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

Zak Stevens (ex SAVATAGE, CIRCLE II CIRCLE) holds the SAVATAGE-flag high in his own respect for years and also this new band completed by Italian musicians goes into that direction. Even though not every single song offers exactly the quality of classic records like “Edge Of Thorns“ (1993) a few tracks or parts here and there definitely do. “Fallen“, the epic title track or the versatile “Twilight“ are one of a kind for instance. Additionally, you get a magnificent artwork!


watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vN5xdP3GOC8

WAITING FOR MONDAY - Waiting For Monday

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

WAITING FOR MONDAY were put into the focus of Frontiers Records by Jeff Scott Soto. The American melodic / hard rockers at times offer a slightly modern approach but manage to bridge the past with contemporary sounds. There are STYX, FOREIGNER or JOURNEY type of melodies and arrangements. The key players are Rudy Cardona (v) und August Zarah (v/g, DENNIS DEYOUNG BAND). One of the rather interesting debuts of the last month. Take a listen!


watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DqvbmeAQ_PE

SILENT TIGER - Ready For Attack

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

SILENT TIGER is the new band of Jean Funes (g, HEARTS ON FIRE), David Cagle (v, LASTWORLD) und Joel Mejia (d, HEARTS ON FIRE). They have Dennis Ward (keys) and Andreas Passmark (b, ROYAL HUNT) to support them and together they create a cool album partly in the vein of EUROPE, DEF LEPPARD or VAN HALEN but also in a lot of contemporary AOR / melodic rock acts.  „Ready To Attack“ is a very promising debut.


listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UXVcJvMyaSA



ARKADO - 03/27
NEWMAN - 03/27
RETURN / V re-issue - 03/27
SHAKRA - 02/28

AOR - Metal Heaven :: Georg Siegl :: Landshuter Str. 11 :: 84051 Altheim :: GERMANY

phone: ++49-8703-8517 :: fax: ++49-8703-8568 :: e-mail: georg.siegl@aorheaven.com

www.metalheaven.net :: www.aorheaven.com