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AOR HEAVEN ::: N E W S L E T T E R ::: 14/05/2021

 

Howdy melodic rockers,

More new stuff is rolling in as you can see below - 3 re-issues from The Take and finally the Kenny McGee stuff from his "Heartless" period plus more goodies from Herman Frank and Aliados.

 

Some of you might look for the new bunch of Rock Candy releases (Silent Rage, Avalon) - the thing is that the German release date has been postponed back now to June, the 4th (that's one month after the initial release date) and it's still unclear if they'll have stock by this time.

 

I have always ordered the Rock Candy stuff directly from Derek Oliver since day one, but now after the Brexit he seems to be not able to take care of the changed shipment settings. In this case we might stop carrying the RC stuff, cause it's impossible to quote when it's available.

 

The same story happened with the new Midnite City CD - just heard that their new CD (which was scheduled for a release due May, the 28th) has been postponed back over here to June, the 11th, cause the label don't has the product available (and the release of the vinyl has been postponed back to July !).

 

That brings a smile on my face - there first two albums where on a label which had at least the product available in time !☺

 

wishing you a great week

Georg & Monika

 

 

 

 

AOR HEAVEN RELEASES:

MICHAEL FURY - Affairs In Babylon
(digitally remastered)

A: 11 € B: 13 €

 

Myles Hunter (ex Avalon Canada), bassist Martyn Jones and guitarist Rob Kennedy founded  MICHAEL FURY (named after a character in James Joyce’s short story, “The Dead”) in 1979. They did the predictable round of club gigs throughout Canada until split up in 1983. Hunter met keyboard wiz Howard Helm (ex Zon) one year later and start to play with him the songs he has been written. Together decided to call Kennedy and Jones back, and with the addition of drummer Dave Mihal reform MICHAEL FURY. An initial demo was picked up by a local small label and the result is “Affairs In Babylon”, released in 1984.MICHAEL FURY toured constantly throughout the country, but they began getting an identity crisis as people mistook the group name ‘Michael Fury’ for Myles Hunter himself.  To compound matters the label tried to push the band as a solo act. This didn’t sit well to the group (Hunter included), then a major US label offers a deal to the band and they bought back the rights to the album and signed a new contract. The disc was re-mixed and re-recorded for the most part, and modified with new songs, “Affairs In Babylon” was re-issued under the band name REFUGEE, with new drummer Brian Doerner (Helix). For the re-release of “Affairs In Babylon” under the Refugee moniker, 5 tracks were replaced by 5 new ones, but those 5 original songs were excellent, too.

Initally only released on vinyl and cassette this mega classic Canadian AOR classic get finally released on CD as a limited edition of 1000 copies incl. liner notes by Dave Reynolds and  a remastered sound by Anthony Panacci.

Listen: https://youtu.be/CxK0jrF-Ypc

 

PROUD - Second Act

A: 11 € B: 13 €

 

Swedish outfit PROUD, founded as BURN in 1982, with their second album - 37 years after their debut “Fire Breaks The Dawn“ (1984). “Second Act“ is classic melodic rock like it’s probably almost only possible in Sweden. The material offers a warm sounding production. Two original members are still on board. The guitars foremost but also the versatile voice of Anders Magnell bring the eighties back to life as well as the massive amount of keyboards do. Just check out ear-candy like “Broken Dreams“, “Crying In The Night“ und “Dangerous“. Mix and master by Erik Mårtensson (ECLISPE).

MARTIN STARK

Watch: https://youtu.be/5dB7qhEaBRA

 

TUPLE - Welcome To Hell

A: 11 € B: 13 €

 

TUPLE is Tommi „Tuple“ Salmela (v, TAROT, LAZY BONES). Keyboard-driven melodic hardrock with elements of glam and certain parallels to WIG WAM, THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA or even RETURN. But this guy from Finland is able to push the limits of the genres aside here and there a little bit. Examples would be the popish “Hold On To Me“, the duet “Survive“ with BATTLE BEAST frontwoman Noora Louhima or the rock club anthem “Pride“, which will make you dance. The songs are loosely connected lyric-wise and take the listener on a trip to Aspen, Colorado in the 18th century. TUPLE has absolutely come to stay and “Welcome to Hell“ is rather heavenly than hellish…

MARTIN STARK

 

Watch: https://youtu.be/esNjHZuDsWk

 

 

 
EXPECTED NEW RELEASES !!
 

KENNY MCGEE - Heartless Daze One (digitally remastered)

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

After achieving his newfound fame with JULLIET, Kenny McGee would not slow down. He wanted to broaden his horizons further and found the perfect opportunity to do so shortly thereafter. A great opportunity would return Kenny home to Florida where he began his solo career with the band HEARTLESS, a band deep in the rock and roll tradition. HEARTLESS would pack clubs night in and night out and record countless never-released songs. Critics and fans argue this is Kenny’s best music he has ever recorded. First time ever on CD and even stronger as the Julliet stuff - think CINDERELLA, GREAT WHITE and cohorts. Digitally remastered by Rob Colwell.

listen: https://youtu.be/NVSib9Cdh4A

KENNY MCGEE - Heartless Daze Two (digitally remastered)

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

After achieving his newfound fame with JULLIET, Kenny McGee would not slow down. He wanted to broaden his horizons further and found the perfect opportunity to do so shortly thereafter. A great opportunity would return Kenny home to Florida where he began his solo career with the band HEARTLESS, a band deep in the rock and roll tradition. HEARTLESS would pack clubs night in and night out and record countless never-released songs. Critics and fans argue this is Kenny’s best music he has ever recorded. First time ever on CD and even stronger as the Julliet stuff - think CINDERELLA, GREAT WHITE and cohorts. Digitally remastered by Rob Colwell.

listen: https://youtu.be/NVSib9Cdh4A

THE TAKE - Get Taken
(digitally remastered)

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

Chris Boudreaux was told by concert promoter Lenard McMillen, after seeing him DJ at club Xenon, that he was too flashy and animated to stay behind the drumkit and he should really think about becoming the front-man for the band. So, Chris set aside the sticks and picked up the mic. THE TAKE put out the album "Get Taken" in 1985, which featured Chris front and center, but this caused some riffs in the band. As the inner struggle of front-man status became apparent within the ranks of THE TAKE, Chris parted ways with the band. Music wise this is a much stronger effort offering a nice slab of keyboard driven mid 80s AOR stuff with great hooklines and massive keyboards.

listen: https://youtu.be/C84ESbWs8K4

THE TAKE - Pink And Proud
(digitally remastered)

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

This is the final album from The Take which was recorded in the later part of 1985 and the beginning of 1986. This album is jam packed of catchy melodic keyboard driven AOR songs that sound like they belong on any classic 80's soundtrack. This album oozes melody up there with any of the AOR classics of the mid 80's, but also contains fantastic guitar playing to compete with the 80's guitar virtuosos (on such tracks as "Comes Now The Night", "Palez Vous Francais" and "Time After Time"). The album features original singer Mike Coones back in action handling lead vocals and Janine Stewart on keyboards. Overall another superb and forgotten US AOR goodie from the golden days of AOR !

listen: https://youtu.be/XRPtz6Yeoe4

THE TAKE - Hard Wave Heroes
(2 CDs, digitally remastered)

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

“Boudreaux” (Boo-drowe) is the last name of multi-talented musician Chris Boudreaux (THE TAKE, SOLDIER, RESTLESS BREED, HAIL MARY, HUNTER), who got his start as a drummer. Chris played in the Utah-based band THE TAKE, where he handled drumming duties on the album "Hard Wave Heroes" and received local praise for his work behind the kit. This album comes as a 2-disc set and comes with a total of 38 tracks. Disc 1 contains the first 25 tracks that were recorded 1980-1983. Disc 2 contains 13 tracks that the band recorded in 1993, but really went back to the bands original sound from the early 80's. The 80s stuff is slightly poppier AOR next to The Cars / Donnie Iris meets New Wave.

watch: https://youtu.be/uVtzouuruLI

HERMAN FRANK - Two For A Lie
(digi pack)

A: 13,5 € B: 16 €

A very reliable source for German heavy metal is former VICTORY and ACCEPT guitar player HERMAN FRANK. “Two For A Lie“ offers high quality. They definitely don’t have to hide from obvious competitors in the vein of ACCEPT or U.D.O. Heavy metal anthems like “Venom“, “Eye Of The Storm“ or “Hail The New Kings“ don’t take prisoners at all. No surprises, though, but equipped with a stunning production and with strong songwriting foremost, it’s really good record.

MARTIN STARK

watch: https://youtu.be/4k7glR8pXBQ

GREAT WHITE - Hooked & Live In New York (2 CDs, digitally remastered)

A: 15,5 € B: 18,5 €

In 1991, Great White were still basking in the epic success of 1989 "Twice Shy". Boasting stellar blues based guitar riffs and the cover of Ian Hunter’s “Once Bitten, Twice Shy”, Great White continued to move away from their mid-decade sound into a less adventurous but more consumer friendly form of rock n’ roll. "Hooked" is as much an extension "Twice Shy" as it is a new album with heavy blues influences and even more mainstream than Great White’s previous record. To their characteristic bluesy hard rock Great White added this time some kind of a stadium vibe, trying to capitalize Damn Yankees’ success - just listen to "The Original Queen Of Sheba". Digitally remastered re-issue from Bad Reputation.

watch: https://youtu.be/ZMbYnb5Zo6g

ALIADOS - Get Off My Life

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

Time for another exotic release, this time we're talking about the band Aliados from Peru. They're in the business since 1996 with three albums in their discography as following : "Abre Tu Alma" (2000), "Aun" (2005) and "Luz" (2016). The first album has been released on a major label (Columbia) and "Get Off My Life" is now their first release with English lyrics on Kivel records. The five piece from Peru pays hommage to bands like Bon Jovi and Gotthard with their catchy melodic rock sound, but their songs are more or less just average at its best and by judging the usual issues with the lead vocals from such exotic countries this is not really on the priority list for melodic rock lovers.

listen: https://youtu.be/BXylqvZERcg

 

NEW RELEASES IN STOCK!!

LEVARA - Levara (digi pack)

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

LEVARA's union merged in Los Angeles. Singer Jules Galli emigrated from France, while drummer Josh Devine chose L.A. as home versus his native UK following success behind the kit with One Direction. There they found common vision with Trev Lukather (guitar), son of Toto's Steve Lukather. Every tune on the band’s debut emanates from inspiration culled from their lives, and their mission is to rally the globe to connect and groove with the band. These songs display a larger than life sound. Anthemic tunes written and recorded visualizing a mass audience becoming one with the body of work. Integrating their personal voices to the live experience. Or simply as a personal soundscape cruising the asphalt with the car stereo cranking.

Watch: https://youtu.be/Q5FDlJLt85c

SEVENTH CRYSTAL - Delirium

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

SEVENTH CRYSTAL is another example of this seemingly endless pool providing melodic bands from Sweden. “Delirium“ is fully packed with hook monsters, breathtaking instrumental parts and slightly progressive elements. The band itself considers themselves playing modern arena rock which fits really pretty well. Sounds similar to DEGREED. What a debut! Let alone the beautiful tracks “When We Were Young“ and “When I’m Gone“ shine. Wow!

MARTIN STARK

Watch: https://youtu.be/BGcA1wUfM3Q

KIKIMORA - Dirty Nails

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

Driving force behind KIKIMORA is Nikolo Kotzev (g, BRAZEN ABBOT). After some material in Bulgarian language and a few cover records, they finally turn back to English. “Dirty Nails“ is high quality hard rock with a few bluesy and classic rock parts here and there. Partly explosive, partly epic but constantly nothing but exciting stuff. A few progressive elements make “Dirty Nails“ even more interesting. Check them out!

MARTIN STARK

Watch: https://youtu.be/4FszGoUZny4

UPPER LIP - Deep Within

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

Hard Rock from the island of Malta. “Deep Within“ contains influences from like AC/DC, BLACK CROWES, GREAT WHITE up tp even THE DARKNESS. Fronter Chris Portelli has got kind of an unique voice which you either love or not. A record that is simply fun. Let alone the groovy “Skinny Jeans“ or the happy-sounding “Mirrors & Masks“ be very appropriate arguments for this interesting release. Nevertheless, UPPER LIP rocks like hell.

MARTIN STARK

Watch: https://youtu.be/MBHVAZ4X76U

SUNBOMB - Evil And Divine

A: 13 € B: 15,5 €

SUNBOMB, the long-awaited collaboration of Tracii Guns (g, LA GUNS) und Michael Sweet (v, STRYPER). Stylistically not surprising, partly pretty heavy and well-played, the SUNBOMB debut is well and powerfully produced, too. Songs like “Take Me Away“ or “Story Of The Blind“ are very much reminiscent of BLACK SABBATH whereas "Stronger Than Before“ for instance has got strong STRYPER flavor, not only because of Sweet’s voice, though.

MARTIN STARK

Watch: https://youtu.be/5czBRkWmF3E

NERGARD - Eternal White

A: 12,5 € B: 15 €

NERGARD, originally from Norway but now kind of an international collaboration, are an alternative to acts like RHAPSODY (OF FIRE), ORDEN OGAN, NIGHTWISH or TERRA ATLANTICA. “Eternal White“ is full of orchestral arrangements, melodic and epic songs on a very high level. The different vocals sounds, male and female, and versatile arrangements are stunning. You got to remember the name NERGARD for sure. Just check out the mighty “From The Cradle To the Grave“.

MARTIN STARK

Watch: https://youtu.be/TNc2_PM8maA

 

COMING NEXT !!
 

KING COMPANY - 06/25
DEVILS IN HEAVEN - 06/25
BJATO - 05/28
TOBB - 05/28
EYES (SE) - 06/04
 
     
 

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