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AOR HEAVEN ::: N E W S L E T T E R ::: 17/01/2020

 

Howdy melodic rockers,

All problems solved and as you can see below a full stack of (mainly) Frontiers releases due next week - see the list below - quite impressing - happy shopping my friends !

 

have a great week

Georg & Monika

 

 

 

AOR HEAVEN SPECIAL RELEASE:

EASY ACTION - That Makes One +2 (digitally remastered)

A: 12 € B: 14,5 €

Swedish outfit EASY ACTION with guitar player Kee Marcello who shortly after the second record went on to join EUROPE changed their style significantly from their rather glam metal-like debut in 1983 to some kind of blueprint for numerous AOR records two years later. Tracks like “Only Love“ or “Partners In Crime“ easily prove this. This rerelease comes with two bonus songs taken from the (rare) singles “Talk Of The Town“ (“Eye For An Eye“) and “In The Middle Of Nowhere“ (“There Is A River“). Vocalist Tommy Nilsson perfectly fits the songs with his energetic voice. “That Makes One“ is remastered by Chris Lyne and limited to 1000 copies. Grab it!  

MARTIN STARK

listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xife2-ICcEI

 

AOR HEAVEN RELEASES!

AUTUMN'S CHILD - Autumn's Child

A: 11 € B: 13 €

AUTUMN’S CHILD and  their great debut somehow ring a bell. Obviously it’s some kind of continuation of LAST AUTUMN’S DREAM, who are on some kind of hiatus after almost 15 records at the moment. Let alone the songwriting, the voice of frontman Mikael Erlandsson or the typical artwork shine. The Swedes - apart from Erlandsson there are Jona Tee (keys, H.E.A.T.), Robban Bäck (d, ex ECLIPSE, MUSTACH), Pontus Åkesson (g, SAFARI MOON) and Claes Andreasson (g, HEARTBREAK RADIO) simply rock. Tracks like “Face The Music“ or “Heaven Knows Your Name“ need to be played live. Caught somewhere between hard rock, AOR and pop stylistically, this debut offers a powerful and versatile production. Strong record!

MARTIN STARK

listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZgN2FYqGzQE

 

THE RAGGED SAINTS - Sonic Playground Revisited

A: 11 € B: 13 €

Finest melodic rock from Finnland. THE RAGGED SAINTS easily deliver their music like it’s still 1987. “Sonic Playground Revisited“ contains melodic anthems (“Never Gonna Let You Down“ or “Absence Of Light“), dry rockers (“Pretending Diamond“) or a beautiful ballad by the name of “Just Believe“, too. Frontmann Markku Kuika offers a wide range vocally and highlights the songs pretty well. In comparison to the 2013 debut “The Sound Of Breaking Free“ more keyboards have been added. Good stuff for lovers of Whitesnake, Def Leppard, Ratt and the like. Highlight is the powerful and extremely melodic “Turning Cold“. It doesn’t need to be Sweden all the time, though.

MARTIN STARK

listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0lCMPZLTOls&t=24s

 

 
EXPECTED NEW RELEASES !!
 

REVOLUTION SAINTS - Rise

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

Deen Castronovo (d/v, u.a. ex JOURNEY), Jack Blades (b/v, NIGHT RANGER) und Doug Aldrich (g, u.a. ex WHITESNAKE) are experts for a sound in the vein of JOURNEY or HARDLINE and, of course, they are on the third REVOLUTION SAINTS record, too. If there are still so-called supergroups, well, this certainly is one. The single “When The Heartache Is Gone“ or the JOURNEY-like “Closer“ are two of the timeless gems on this album.

MARTIN STARK

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zuSOLYJ3ne4

DECARLO - Lightning Strikes Twice

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

Stadium rock in the vein of FOREIGNER, REO SPEEDWAGON or BOSTON with Westcoast elements can be found on “Lightning Strikes Twice“ which is actually no surprise because Tommy DeCarlo (v) is with BOSTON since 2007. Although not every single song shines on this record, the guys can play and production-wise it’s fine, too. “You Are The Fire“ and “Into The Storm“ are ear candy, for instance. The ballad “Still In Love“ is also absolutely top-class.

MARTIN STARK

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFQE8q2lvCw

WOLFPAKK - Nature Strikes Back (Digipack)

A: 13,5 € B: 16 €

32 (!), partly high-class, guest musicians, e.g. Michael Sweet (v, STRYPER), Craig Goldy (g, ex DIO) or Joey Tafolla (g, JAG PANZER) sounds impressive but it’s still Michael Voss on vocals, guitar and production with Mark Sweney (v, ex CRYSTAL BALL) who run the show here. “Nature Strikes Back“ is the strongest effort of this project so far for sure but again too many fillers can be found. Sometimes less is more.

MARTIN STARK

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H1XwnrusK9M

BLUE OYSTER CULT - Hard Rock Live Cleveland 2014
(2 CDs + DVD, digi pack)

A: 15,5 € B: 18,5 €

“Hard Rock Live Cleveland 2014“ comes as 2CD plus DVD and offers a powerful and good sounding gig of the American band. BLUE ÖYSTER CULT apparently seem to be still in good shape. It’s a well-balanced setlist covering all eras of the band which is active for decades and like with all the recent live outputs of Frontiers Records you get quite a good value for your hard earned money.

MARTIN STARK

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z-h4cM79zt0

BLUE OYSTER CULT - Cult Classic

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

“Cult Classic“ is a 1994 newly recorded best of record of American hard rockers around Eric Bloom (v) and Donald “Buck Dharma“ Roeser (g) which sees the light of day again these days, freshly remastered and with a reworked artwork. It’s no secret for sure that BLUE ÖYSTER CULT is way more than “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper“ oder “Burning For You“. The perfect start into the world of an act that once combined hard rock, heavy metal and psychedelic rock.

MARTIN STARK

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

JORN - Heavy Rock Radio II - Executing The Classics

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

Whether an album full of covers makes sense or not is an individual choice but JORN from Norway can sing, can’t he? Legendary songs like “Bad Attitude“ (DEEP PURPLE) or “Mystery“ (DIO) can never be wrong and then there are (positive!) surprises like “Lonely Nights“ (BRYAN ADAMS) or “New York Minute“ (DON HENLEY) which offer a totally new approach here. But at he end of the day: If you like rock, this record fits you well. Period.

MARTIN STARK

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S51mzNc6lqI

SHADOW BREAKER - Shadow Breaker

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

SHADOW BREAKER and their self-titled debut devote themselves to heavy and hard rock. The French outfit, which emerged out of he ashes of the bands SAVOUREY and NORTHWIND, plays a rather unusual type of sound. A real surprise because that very style is not that common for a French band. Positive are the lack of accent in the singer’s voice and a lot of groove and good songwriting but one or two outstanding tracks would have been nice, though.

MARTIN STARK

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=909jQfvc1G8

ELEGY OF MADNESS - Invisible World

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

ELEGY OF MADNESS is an Italian symphonic metal band around female vocalist Anja Irulla who has got a remarkable voice. Good alternative for instance for fans of NIGHTWISH, WITHIN TEMPTATION, TARJA oder EDENBRIDGE. Album number four of the six-piece is mostly pretty epic, orchestral with melodic hooks but quite heavy elements, too. There are even a few growls but this fits the overall concept.

MARTIN STARK

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

MICHAEL THOMPSON BAND - High Times - Live In Italy
(CD + DVD)

A: 14,5 € B: 17,5 €

Another live record emerging from Frontiers own festival in Milano, Italy and this time featuring the first ever European show of Westcoast / soft AOR act MICHAEL THOMPSON, who is a very active American session musician. It’s solid mix of songs from the 1989 debut and the current record “Love & Beyond“ which wasn’t released back then. For fans of TOTO for example pretty recommendable stuff.

MARTIN STARK

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KBvczH9A8m4

DIRTY SHIRLEY - Dirty Shirley

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

DIRTY SHIRLEY are more or less Croatian powerhouse singer Dino Jelusic (ANIMAL DRIVE) and George Lynch (g, DOKKEN, LYNCH MOB) foremost. But who on Earth was responsible for the ridiculous artwork? Never mind, the music, which is most important, though, is much better. At times bluesy like classic WHITESNAKE and then rocking like hell, the band delivers a very solid debut. Lynch can play like hell which is no surprise.

MARTIN STARK

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-8hSpK4oK2Q

PASSION - Passion

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

PASSION are a young British band that right away - with one short glimpse at the artwork - shows what to expect. Frontman Daniel Rosall a.k.a Lion Ravarez (ex NIGHT BY NIGHT) wrote and played the album basically on his own but in the meantime PASSION has become a full-grown band. Stylistically somewhere in the vein of DANGER DANGER, RATT, VAN HALEN, FOREIGNER, AC/DC or AEROSMITH, the band is already able to leave their own footprints.

MARTIN STARK

watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jj468QgBboU

STORM FORCE - Age Of Fear

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

“Age Of Fear“ is the debut of the Canadian band around Greg Fraser (g, BRIGHTON ROCK) and Patrick Gagliardi (v, ex SURFACE TENSION) and they deliver classic melodic rock. Produced and mixed by Darius Szczepaniak  (BLACK CROWES, SUM 41). The sound is as mature as the songwriting which is mostly reminiscent of CINDERELLA, VAN HALEN, UFO, TRIUMPH and THE WHO including cool ballads (e.g. “Ember Rain“).

MARTIN STARK

 
 
NEW RELEASES IN STOCK !
 

STRANGERS - Brand New Start (digi pack)

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

This is the second stint with Spanish melodic rockers Strangers from Madrid, who crossed our bow back in 2015 with their (then) second album 'Survival'. I can tell you here and now, 2019's "Brand New Start" takes these guys to new heights. Some of the work on here is astounding. What a difference four years makes. The material is stronger, production flawless while the vocals - in particular the harmony vocals has been given such attention to detail you'd swear Rob Moratti or Tony Niva was sitting in the production suite! But no, the band's new singer is Baol Bulsara and who also pulls double duty as the current singer with TNT, and appeared on their 'XIII' album last year. What a voice, and what a coup to get him onboard.

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8YCcwEz1Y-0

ADELLAIDE - New Horizons

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

Brazilian melodic rock act Adellaide surprised with their promising debut EP and a year later with a full length effort, and this sophomore release showcases an even more confident band both in songwriting and performances. The first thing that impress on “New Horizons” is the polished arrangements, even better that on the first album. Frontman Daniel Vargas is a guy with a privileged voice, a fantastic tone for the style that perfectly fit these melodious compositions. Adellaide really reach ‘New Horizons’ with this new album, their best work to date in the vein of acts like Lionville, Care Of Night or Theander Expression. You can’t miss ‘New Horizons’, a terrific slice of AOR / Melodic Rock of the highest order.

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rgXrA6DyafI

MAGNUM - The Serpent Rings (digi pack)

A: 13,5 € B: 16 €

“The Serpent Rings“ immediately sounds majestically. Although Bob Catley’s voice has been more powerful in the past, the Britons still got that certain and unique kind of magic. The epic sound of tracks like “The Serpent Rings“, “You Can’t Run Faster Than Bullets“ or “The Archway Of Stars“ perfectly fits rather heavy tracks like “The Great Unknown“ or “House Of Kings“. MAGNUM still going strong in 2020.

MARTIN STARK

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8UGgfhiJ-k8

THE BOYZZ - Too Wild To Tame (digitally remastered)

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

The Boyzz, a midwestern bluesy hard rock outfit, were virtually anonymous at the time of their debut "Too Wild To Tame" in 1978. Almost 20yrs later and the same could be said. However, in the midwest, the band flourished and sold out shows on a regular basis. After the failure of their one and only album, the band took a short sabbatical and reinvented themselves under the new name, The B'zz in the 80s. That didn't seem to make much of a difference either. However, in the new millennium there's been a resurgence of the band's popularity in their home turf and a new augmented lineup currently tours the region with reasonable success. Bad Reputation records re-issue, digitally remastered.

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7JVHvyVde8

BLADE CISCO - Edge Of The Blade

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

Hailing from Italy BLADE CISCO are ready to release their official debut album “Edge Of The Blade”, co-produced and mastered by talented Michele Luppi. Formed in 2007, Blade Cisco shows their love for classic Melodic Rock inspired by legends like Journey, Foreigner or Night Ranger, to name a few influences. “Edge of the Blade” draws towards the softer side of AOR/melodic rock with the majority of songs being down tempo and keyboard driven, though featuring some exceptional guitar melodies and solos. Overall the album feature solid songwriting, strong performances and top-notch production, but like many other Italian bands the lead vocals from Andrea Zanini leaves some desires. A solid AOR release, that's it.

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xahsmtt18lI

SAINTS TRADE - Time To Be Heroes

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

SAINTS TRADE was born in Bologna in 2009 with a great will to play music and a sheer passion for glorious Hard Rock bands.So far the Italian bunch has released the mini album "A Matter Of Dreams" (2012) and their first full album "Robbed In Paradise" (2014). The melodic rock / AOR music of Saints Trade certainly live up to their good-time / feel-good moniker. Across nearly an hour, they showcase here just why this sound is alive and well in 2019. Slightly harder edged as their labal colleges Blade Cisco the Italian three piece has written some really strong melodic hard tunes, but they also have to deal with just average lead vocals from their singer Santi Libra, which is their biggest weakness.

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wPFiZx-NJ_4

 
 

COMING NEXT !!
 

JESSE DAMON - 02/28
SHAFT OF STEEL - 02/28
THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA - 02/28
H.E.A.T. - 02/21
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