Must say I never quite understood the Winger bashing when they started out. Guess they could not care less as it did not stop them from scoring a couple of hits in the early days. Still they turned left somewhere down the road and stuck with the music they cared about. Thus delivering us some pretty entertaining albums. After a period in which they all went their separate ways (and Kip Winger releasing some stunning solo work in a much more progressive style as well as a mandatory live acoustic disk) they have returned to recording again.
And in 2009 that brought us Karma. Opening with some fierce tracks like Deal With The Devil and Stone Cold Killer, they prove they still know how to write rocking tunes with catchy hooks and some flashy solos from Reb Beach. And could it really be this is heavier than ever?
But I am also happy to report some more expanded songs have found their way to the album. Supernova, After All this Time and Witness all clock in at 6 to 7 minutes and go way past the verse – chorus routines. And with bonus track First Ending they prove even more that boundaries only exist in the minds of the narrow, as that is a lovely piano piece.
So for me another great Winger album with huge choruses and killer songs. Keep ´em coming!
This second album from On The Rise (now with only Terje Eide playing most of the instruments, along with the help of people like Eric Ragno) is a prime example of how commercial sounding melodic rock, can still be relevant. Commercial actually being the wrong word of course, as almost bloody no one plays this type of music on radio anymore. Which is a shame! But you will get I am hinting at music that is easy on the ears and quickly sinks into your system.
Opener Lifeline has a brilliant riff and chorus, and the guitars are supported by some tasty Hammond. As is the case on several other tracks on the disk. Enough room for variation, and arrangements are mature as well as the playing.
So in all honesty, I think this is a pretty simple thought process; do you like your rock to be melodic, with enough guitars and keyboards to keep things interesting and diverse, and with harmony vocals that are big where they can be? Than this is clearly a winner for you.
Should you ever have wondered if talent is in the genes, and thus hereditary, here some proof that is actually the case. Does the name Jim Peterik ring a bell? Think Eye Of The Tiger (Survivor), Pride Of Lions, etc. . In short the writer of many hit songs and other great music.
Well his son Colin Peterik is the main songwriter, singer and keyboard player of this Chicago based outfit. And you know what, at the home of the Peterik family there must have been a massive 70´s (prog) rock record collection, because Lobster Newberg serve up what might be described as an amalgam of prog rock music from the seventies on. And do so with a class and panache that is quite mindblowing.
Not afraid to add trumpet, sax, harmonica, flute and what ever they feel adds to the colour of the songs, this quartet delivers an album filled to the brim with exquisite musicianship, catchy melodies and daring arrangements. Classy Hammond playing, and the Mellotron is present as well.
Without ever losing momentum or trying to be clever just for the sake of it. Nope, this is a wonderful album that keeps fresh and lets you discover new things all the time.
So if the music from bands like Spock´s Beard, Steely Dan and the greats from previous era is featured in your collection, than this is something you have to listen to. Timeless!
For anyone who is longing for a band like Thin Lizzy to stop reliving the past and record some new music: your wishes have been fulfilled! That is, a bit. Because the current Thin Lizzy miss their original founder, singer, bass player and principal songwriter Phil Lynott and will probably tour till the end of times, playing all those famous songs. But record new material, no, not likely…
So here is where Street Legal come in. Norwegians Bjorn and Oystein Boge have again assembled a couple of friends and recorded their second album, Bite The Bullit. And while singer Bjorn is not a clone of Phil, I can stop thinking of Lizzy when listening to this. And mind you, not because they are blatantly ripping them off! No, this outfit has a mind of their own, but just ooze that same hard rock and boogie quality that Lizzy were famous for. Of course there is more to this. Firmly rooted in seventies music, but with a modern sound, this is not a one trick pony.
So this grooves, rocks and parties all night long. Easy to connect to, well done and just plain worth adding to your collection. So if you like Thin Lizzy, or if you are into melodic hard rock that kicks ass, this is a CD for you. Love it.