Updated 19th December 2002

Joy Focus - Wycked Synn - Pedestrians Of Blue - Urban Tale - Unruly Child ("III") - Adam Bomb - Deseption - Faithfull - Evidence - Mystery Blue - Freewheeler - Alliance - Bonfire - Evidence One - Harem Scarem - Unruly Child ("The Basement Demos") - Deeds - Poley/Pichler - Vaughn - Sinopoli

All reviews by Andrea Bertamino except where noted




"Super Happy Family Wish Record" (JRS Music)

Rating: 90

Joy Focus is a trio from Illinois arriving with seven songs perfectly tuned with the title of this cd, a sound driven by the guitar of Ray Kainz (he plays also bass and keyboards) and by the voice of Holly Joy, an image between comics and wrestling combined to a great professionality that allows to enjoy the positive pop rock with traces of modern rock.

"Istant Anything" is a great opener that has all that needs to please our ears, from the refrain in Cheap Trick/Enuff Z’ Enuff style with a slight touch of Marvelous 3, making peace among teenagers and older listeners.

With "Hear Say" I thought to hear a catchy song typical of Abba performed by a good American power pop band, while "Undone" might be a song written by Roxette with a greater electric load above all in the ultracatchy refrain.

Despite the cheerful atmosphere of the greatest part of the songs, Joy Focus know how to build more reflective, helaborated and mautre tunes like "Two Days" (showing a deeper dimension of the band without losing cathcy melodies) or the tough funk rock "Count Me Out".

On "High Beam Hair Cut" I found few similitudes with AOR like REO Speedwagon and Rick Sprinfield, always filtered through the JF’s personality, while closing "Hello" is maybe the most complete song of this cd and is worth to be listened to and loved!

There’s only to mention the great drum job by Rick Currence (he shares the bass duties with Ray), the professionalism in writing, recording and arranging these songs that in a short time will bring Joy Focus to the international attention!

Contacts: http://www.joyfocus.tv


"Promo" (Cassell Records)

Rating: 75

Wycked Synn come from Arizona with a four tracks promo-cd containing some gritty class metal in pure ‘80s style saving no energies of watts, music that seems to arise from dusty tapes forgotten in one studio in LA back in 1985.

"In My Mind" opens with speed and strenght this cd recalling the best Keel and the more aggressive songs of early ‘80s Scorpions (and the singer seems a mix between Ron Keel and Klaus Meine of that age), with a furious drumming driving wild many parts of the song.

Tension remains high in "The Savior" more oriented towards the European heavy metal, without forgetting that important factor called melody, this one more evident in the ‘paced’ "If You Said Goodbye" quite similar to Rough Cutt, Dokken or Heaven’s Edge, with a nice guitar work.

"Till The End" closes this demo reflecting Black’N’Blue, Keel and Dokken with no concession to nowadays temptations, with the pros and cons that this choice brings along.

A last mention to the sound that’s raw, worth of a demo tape as it was used to do in the ‘80s.

Contacts: http://www.angelfire.com/indie/wyckedsynn/


"Circles Of Butterflies" (Self Produced)

Rating: 90

Few monthes ago I introduced to you Orange Crush from Norway and today from this band arises the project called Pedestrians Of Blue of singer/keyboardist Johannes Stole who, with Torfinn Sirnes (gt) and Kjetil Lundo (bs), releases a six tracks mini-cd titled "Circles Of Butterflies", a total change of artistic horizon than AOR/melodic rock music of Orange Crush. Infact, here they deal with a melodic heavy rock, sometimes dark and with progressive hints reflecting somehow Queensryche, Metallica and Enchant, but overlooked by Stole's melodic singing who confirms himself a great vocalist.

Opener "Father & Son" is maybe the heaviest track, sort of mix between Metallica and Black Sabbath with unexpected prog accents similar to Arena and a closing part recalling of Dream Theater because of the great keyboard work.

Following "Crossing" offers a dark and oppressive verse that flows anyway into a catchy and melodic refrain, with a great key-solo to close a track furnished with a peculiar charm.

With "When The Rain Falls" the three musicians move deeper into experimens with electronic percussions, filtered vocals and wisely spread effects. In this song progressive rock is bounced with heavy metal of the '90s keeping high the melodic dose thanks (as already stated above) to the vocals.

"Out Of The Rain" is the last real song starting tiny and melancholic as an Autumnal rainy day, suddenly broken by a might guitar riff over which we can hear a synth solo recalling of the '70s, leading us to pompous openings like Kansas/Arena.

The edited version of "Crossing" and "Out of the Rain" don't add much else to what already expressed by these splendid artists to whom I only reproach the use of a drum machine sometimes irritating the listening, but the songwriting is really excellent and if no label should ever sign them, this would be a great unjustice.

Contacts: http://www.pedestriansofblue.com , mail@pedestriansofblue.com .


"Signs Of Times" (Frontiers Records)

Rating: 80

This is the second chapter for Finnish band formed by Kimmo Blom (vc), Erkka Korhonen (gt), Tuomo Kovalainen (bs), Timo Pudas (keyb) and Kari Valimaki (dr) that has to face the very good debut album, confirming the artistic journey today supported by a better quality of sound.

The start is given by my most loved song of this cd, that is the sparkling "Starship Of Giants" mixing traces of Toto with Kansas circa "Power" and offers a pompous, emphatic and ultracatchy refrain that I simply can’t stop listening to. Please mind the combined passages guitar/keyboards in the solo sections developing a great alchemy.

Unfortunately after such a melodic opulence, UT lose their way and the quality has a sharp fall as showed by negligible pop rock "Hello Light!" and by undefined "Houdini’s Eyes", senseless included in the tracklist and placed as second and third song.

Things get better with romantic slow "Still Strong" containing a nice orchestration by Pudas and clear links with old Journey, with the tight AOR of "Son Of A Gun", the nervous background of "Open Your Heart" with a nice refrain and "Captain Of Clouds" which hides slight traces of Survivor and Journey.

The remaining tracks flow with no particular highs, often missing the winning refrain and skimming (with no such great results) modern rock with "Monsters".

The delicate "Mary" for voice and piano only closes with its sweetness a release that exalts me only once, satisfies me thrice, disappoints me thrice, leaves me indifferent in the other 40%.

Maybe my expectations were too high, of maybe the band was to wait a little before entering the studio again, anyway I’ll keep listening to the great and catchy "Starship Of Giants" for a long time to go!


"UC III" (Frontiers Records)

Rating: 80

Three singers for three studio albums (excluding the recent demo collection "The Basement Tapes" might let you figure that leaders Bruce Gowdy and Guy Allison are even worse than Yngwie Malmsteen, but reality is quite different and new singer Philip Bardowell (ex Magdalen) was called because Kelly Hansen choose to re-join Hurricane.

After all it’s no bad for us because Philip is a good singer not so far from Foreigner’s Lou Gramm, but don’t think to listen to the powerful AOR of the debut album because on "III" the ruling role is for a melodic hard rock with psychedelic traces appearing here and there.

Among the best tunes you’ll find opener "Tear Me Down", whose verse recalls of the best Kingdom Come to flow into a refrain peculiar of arena rock golden age, and following "Falling" plus "All Around Me" with a performance by Bardowell that gives sensations of Foreigner, but also early Harem Scarem.

"Bring Me Home" starts delicate to grow step by step in intensity, with passionate vocal parts and an important keyboards work by Allison, while "Kings Of Tragedy" sees UC dealing with a dramatic and elaborated hard rock that pleases my ears.

The remaining songs are not equal in quality to the fame built by Gowdy and Allison in 1992, althought there’s nothing to be ashamed of here, thanks also to a great performance by Bardowell.


"New York Times" (Mausoleum Records)

Rating: 85


Don’t expect from this Adam Bomb’s album some music similar to that played with TKO or on his previous solo albums, because here there’s so great variety of different styles that will please fans of last decades US rock music.

Originally, "NYT" was recorded in 1990 with famous producer Jack Douglas and guitarists Mick Taylor (Rolling Stones) and Steve Stevens, Nicky Hopkins (piano), Michael Lee Smith (vc), Flo & Eddie (b.vc), bassists TM Stevens and Phil Feit, so that they stayed in the studios almost four monthes, they recorded twelve songs instead of the three foreseen, budget grew from 5.000 USD to 100.000. Because of an European press tour for some previous solo album, Adam’s had to delay the date of release but when he got back to the USA e found the studios closed for bankrupcy and the tapes stolen. Several years later (I suppose in the 1997) he had a call from a woman who offered this tapes back but Adam had to raise 5.000 USD within a week and so it was.

Once again with Bobby Chouinard (dr), Kenny Aaronson (bs) and Alan StJon (keyb) (that is quite the Billy Squier backing band), Adams and Douglas put the final touches but fate wanted that the same day the two men went to masterize the tapes, they had the news of Chouinard’s death and everything seemed to thumble down. Now Adam has the strenght to release this songs very intense and different, maybe the finest album ever recorded by Bomb.

The first song is "Lyin’ With Dogs", a lively American r’n’r that sums up the best of Kiss, Aerosmith and Rolling Stones filled with horns, while "More Or Less" and "New York Child" slow the pace looking more to the ‘70s. "Cheyenne" is a melodic pop rock with warm harmonies in sharp contrast with the nervous and dark riffing of "Walk The Other Way" that owes a lot to Hanoi Rocks, and this tune itself contrasts with "Saluda A Lola" (latin rhythms and one melodic flavour coming from The Beatles) and the very sweet "Heaven Come To Me".

Only "Kick It Out" and "Anxiety" recalls of early Adam Bomb, and the cover of immortal Rolling Stones’ "It’s Only Rock & Roll" is a tribute to his early music influences.

If you judge yourself as a wide-opened minded person, don’t hesitate to buy this incorrupt and intese rock songs collection.

Contacts: http://www.adambomb.com


"Shadows Of The Sun" (RingoRike Music)

Rating: 75

Bill Carter and Michael King are the main men of this Washington based band born in 1987 and since then writing and recording several songs 15 of which are here featured with their ‘80s melodic rock fine smell, but with a too amateurish sound.

Anyway it’s quite easy to appreciate songs like mid tempo "Love Is Real", "Signal In The Noise" (very close to Night Ranter and Haywire), "Losing The Heart" (whose Journey like melodies lay over a structure similar to Surgin), "So Alone" (it’s easy to recall of Le Roux here).

Not so bad also the exuberant "Individuality" (and Autograph might have included it on one of their albums) and "Istinct" worth of the second league of early ‘80s AOR League with a very good melodic leaning.

Unfortunately there are also some fillers and I found them mostly whe Deseption get far from the more typical AOR style to explore hard rock or teenager rock, but the greatest disappointment is for sound quality that might have helped Carter and King to gain at least five more points. In facts, a reasonable number of tracks are very good and interesting showing a nice ability in writing songs of this new/old melodic duo.

Contacts: http://www.mp3.com/deseption


"Light This City" (Demo CD)

Rating: 85

Fans of US Melodic Rock should consider this band from Portugal led by singer Sergio Sabino also in the band called Evidence (review below). The songs are home recorded (but of a quality at least similar to some of releases from the European AOR labels) and this is the only fault from Faithfull.

"All I Want, All I Need" is a great opener thanks to those harmonies like Honeymoon Suite and Preview (so here you can here pure ‘80s melodic rock), and also following "Melting Your Ice" and "Like A Shadow" keep the quality high even if these have accents from Tyketto and Icon, while with cheerful "Light This City" the band offers American melodies like Bon Jovi of the ‘80s (of course!).

A passionate guitar playing introduces both "Cast Out The Rain" and "Ending Song", two classic rock ballads showing more points of contact with Bon Jovi because of also of Sergio’s voice, but Rui Palma (bs), Sergio Ramos (dr) and Rui Martins (gt) are good to put some personality for hopes of a brighter future.

Only in "You Won’t Get Me Now" and "I Have Been Missing You" Faithfull play some less important material, but with closing "The Way I Am" they grow and give us a nice melodic rocker.

IMHO with a full time keyboard player Faithfull will climb easily the AOR world charts, then they need an intelligent label that doesn’t release the songs as they are now (a demo, don’t forget) with proclaims of an official release (and this leaves at least three of the European labels out of the game), a serious producer who knows how to work and a true recording studio. Then it should be only a question of time.

Contacts: http://www.faithfullrocks.com , faithfullrocks@hotmail.com


"Spiral" (Recital Records)

Rating: 85

As written above, Sergio Sabino sings also in another band from Portugal called Evidence born in 1995 in Lisbon and with debut cd "Truth From A Lie" released five years later. This year they recorded eleven new songs with producer Luis Barros (Tarantula) and mastered by expert Tommy Newton for a powerful, clean and professional sound.

Evidence play more aggressive than Faithfull, bouncing hard rock with some German melodic metal accents and also with class rock like Dokken.

The best moments are at the beginning with "Line Of Fire", "Promised Land" and "Desperation" joining a mighty rhythm section worth of acts like Pink Cream 69, Jaded Heart, Affair, Victory and Bonfire, with cathcy harmonies in a very good balance between power and melody.

I don’t mean that the remaining songs are not good (many artists wuold be proud to write several of them) but they look at the previous highs from below. Anyway "Chances", with that mix of Dokken and Hardline (so to say: this song is better than the 80% of the tracks included in the come back album of the the latters) is enjoyable and dragging, and also "Laughing At You" is a nice mid tempo. "Against The Tide", "Pull You Out" and "Prison Walls" are more oriented towards the European heavy metal and defenders of the metallic faith will be pleased by them.

Curiously, Sabino sings in a very different way if compared to Faithfull hiding his vocals similar to Jon Bon Jovi, perfectly fitting the needs of these songs. Well done!

Contacts: http://www.evidence.online.pt , evidencemetal@hotmail.com


"Demo" (Self Released)

Rating: 80

This three tracks demo I'm going to talk you about, comes from French Mystery Blue, heavy metal band formed in 1982 with albums "Mystery Blue" (Axe Killer – 84) and "Circle of Shame" (Dream Records – 86) under the belt, to come back in 1998 with new album "Spirit Of Your Song" featuring singer Nathalie Philippon whose voice is quite close to Lee Aaron and Pat Benatar in metal version.

Now they release the present demo well recorded at JAM Studios in Germany by Andy Lübbert and Stefan Glass (Vanden Plas, Ian Parry, Andre Matos), absolutely tradizional in its pure heavy metal of the '80s, solid, aggressive, with the sharp axe of Francis "Frenzy" Philippon to dominate the scene and a powerful, cynamic rhythm section consisting in drummer ‘Vince’ (ex Altar) and bassist Dany.

"Dark Vision" is opened (and later closed) by a melancholic guitar that soon flows into an epic ride recalling of Queensryche, Iron Maiden and even early '80s Scorpions, the whole with a burning guitar solo by.

The start of "Roller Coaster Ride" will stamp a joyful smile over many metallers that lived that glorious age of the '80s and the same songs gives a fuck to all happened from 1990 to nowadays, anyway without nostalgy and with a grit worth to be mentioned.

The anthemica "Angel" is the last song and the closest to early Iron Maiden / Saxon, destined to be the most remembered track by listeners thanks to a repeated and catchy refrain that when played live will incite to headbanging!

Three songs are few for a more complete review, but more than enough to mark the name of Mystery Blue on the notebook waiting for the new full lenght album to come, if you like old school heavy metal.

Contacts: Hmysteryblue@aol.com, http://www.mysteryblue.com

FREEWHEELER "Track Demo" (Self Produced) Rating: 70

This four piece called Freewheeler comes from London and is formed by Seb (vc), Pete (gt), Sophie (bs) and Russ (dr). They recorded three songs perpetuating the tradition of the old, mean, dirty and raunchy r'n'roll, capturing the attention of Doug Hall (Iron Maiden's sound engineer) and of famous producer Kit Woolven (Magnum, etc).

The tracks are funny, dragging and catchy breaking no new ground, but they involve you with the load of dragging charm that Freewheeler must bring on stage, so here it is the vicious "Whiskey & The Pills" (stinking of Slade and of Dogs D' Amour only faster), "This Is Rock' N' Roll" (somehow recalling of eary Ted Nugent and Motley Cure plus Dogs D'Amour) and with perverse "Man Not A Woman" and its visceral feeling like Slade.

Music without frills and round, already listened before and funny, spontaneous, ideal to unwind positively the daily nervous load, if possible with a rich English beer in your hand.

Contacts: http://www.dreamwater.org/music/freewheeler


"Sleep With One Eye Open" (Self Produced)

Rating: 75

This five piece from Helsinki (Finland) born in 1999 and with the ep "In Control" released in year 2000, has chosen a name with no particular fantasy, but the music is quite enjyable delivering a mighty heavy metal with a taste of Queensryche exalted in the titletrack, where Tomi Viiltola sings in very similar way to Bruce Dickinson. The song flows anyway pleasant thanks also to good melodic hints.

"No Apoligies" is a pure heavy metal song grown at the Iron Maiden high school, but the older fans among you will also find passages stolen to the Judas Priest circa "Screaming For Vengeance". The pace is pretty fast and the track is less melodic than "Sleep With...".

I like to mention the names of Esa Tikkanen (bs), Juri Vuortama (gt), Tomi Sundström (gt) and Samuli Häkkilä (dr) who complete a kicking and solid band.

Contacts: http://www.allianceweb.w3.to ; allianceweb@w3.to

BONFIRE "Live Over Europe" (LZ Records) Rating:80

Old German rockers Bonfire have collected in this cd seventeen songs recorded live during their last Golden Bullets Tour picking tracks both from the first albums and from the newest one with tunes like "Daytona Nights" and "Don’t Go Changin’ Me".

The band features Claus Lessmann (vc), Hans Ziller (gt), Jurgen Wiehler (dr), Uwe Kohler (bs) plus additional musicians like Chris Lausmann (gt, keyb) and Are Haug (gt, bs), all of them releasing a powerful performance along this seventy-minutes-long tracklist of enjoyable melodic hard rock, graced by a clean a very good sound quality, that give the idea of how good a Bonfire show can be.

Among the song we also find a very personal revisitation of "Sweet Home Alabama" (Lynyrd Skynyrd), fans salute it and sing along the immortal refrain.

If you have almost nothing of Bonfire, this ‘best of’ is a good chance to get in confidence with past discography of these German champions of rock and with nowadays line-up.


"Criticize The Truth" (AOR Heaven)

Rating: 85

This is a sort of side project started by Robby Boebel (gt, keyb - Frontline) and Carsten Schulz (vc - Domain) in November 2001, with Thomas Bauer (bs - Frontline) and Roger Tanner (dr - Shakra) to complete the band, and now we can hear "Criticize The Truth" including ten songs for almost fourty-five minutes of melodic hard rock balancing US-rock tensions and German school trademarks.

Opener is the titletrack, an epic and paced track followed by "Trust Vs. Heart" starting like a balld, but after a minute it becomes a nice class rock between Icon and Voodoo X. "Different Worlds-Different Times" brings both the melodic and the epic aspects to their extremes (just hear it!) and needs several spins to be appreciated, while faster "Like Never Before" joins the neoclassic heavy rock without exaggerations like Malmsteen, but Boebel can play anyway a hot and long solo.

With "Foolz Gold" Evidence One keep up and high the German melodic hard rock flag and put in it a solo portion quite close to a light-metal-prog, while "In The Beginning There Was Fire" blinks the eye to the USA and with "Spend The Top With Me" they sound like a Hugo's Valentine heavy version.

I like the fact that musicians don't seem to use their names to gather some money, but to release an interesting piece of music superior to the average of today's albums, adding nothing new to the scene. They'll tour Europe with Saxon next January 2003.

Contacts: Evidence One

HAREM SCAREM "Live At The Gods 2002" (Frontiers Records) Rating: 80

More than an hour of live music recorded at the last The Gods of AOR, this is what you find in this new release by Harem Scarem who offer sixteen songs from their repertoire, including the periodo under the Rubber name from which "Stuck With You" (cheerful and catchy modern pop) and "Who-Buddy" (a dynamic track with that unmistakable ‘60s like flavour in the refrain) are taken.

Tracklist includes also "Change Comes Around", "Killing Me", "Hard To Love", "You Ruined Everything", "This Ain’t Over", "See Saw", "If You", "Warming A Frozen Rose", "How Long", "Honestly", "Outside Your Window", "So Blind", "The Paint Thins", "No Justice" and to me it’s always curious to hear songs performed without the original keyboards parts (particularly in touching ballad "Honestly" and in the AOR tunes "Hard To Love" and "How Long" featured on the debut album of year 1991).

A pleasant document (available also in DVD) that’s not useless even if it’s the countless ‘best of’ (live or in studio is no difference) that’s an important part of HS’ discography.


"The Basement Demos" (Frontiers Records)

Rating: 85

This collection comes a little before the new album "UC III" recorded with new singer Phillip Bardowell (Magdalen) taking place of Kelly Hanses, and in it Bruce Gowdy (gt) and Guy Allison (keyb) offer all the demo versions of songs written and recorded between 1992 and 1994 that ended up on Unruly Child’s debut album and on some Twelve Pound Sledge (the band formed by Bruce and Guy after the first split of UC) demos.

The original line-up featured also ex King Kobra and Signal singer Mark Free (as you know now she’s called Marcie Free), Larry Antonino (bs, called just before the recording session to substitute Ricky Phillips) and Jay Schellen (dr - Hurricane), and this five piece released in 1992 a great melodic hard rock album produced by Beau Hill, so today we can hear the original versions before Hill put his hands over, operation that Gowdy and Allison didn’t like so much.

The story of each song is explained in the booklet and let me remember that "On The Rise" gives a good start with energy and melody, "Rock Me Down Nasty" is influenced by previous experience in World Trade by Bruce and Guy, "To Be Your Everything" is a fine semi ballad and "Lay Down Your Arms" bounces successfully Winger, Def Leppard and Damn Yankees.

"Is It Over", written in less than an hour, and "Let’s Talk About Love" represents at the best the American melodic mid tempos with hints of Alias, while "Long Hair Woman" is a sort of tribute to Led Zeppelin and was included in the debut album forcing Hill’s decisions to leave it out.

From now to the end we have a number of unreleased songs like mid tempo "Forever" (the band choose other similar songs because of better quality, and it is true), "Live In The Night" (mix of Van Halen, Molly Hatchet and even Queen!), "Undefeated" and "Down The Road" (more blues oriented), while "Unruly Child" has here different text and backing vocals.

Three more songs come from the 12 Pound Sledge demos: "Still Believe" was the first song written by Gowdy and Guy one year later the split and is an easy pop/rock track; "The Man Inside" was written in 1993 and shows an approach close to more commercial Yes; "Live Without Love" of 1992 is different again with a harder edge than what was done before.

"True Love" shows a band working about the debut album because is an intense pop rock with gospel chourses and unfortunately was not included on the album.

The DVD contains exclusive of live videos plus an interview with founding members Gowdy and Allison, but since I cannot see it, I end this review with two warnings: the sound has the quality of a demo (not so bad anyway) and the answer given by Bruce and Guy to the question if the versions on "TBD" are similar to those appeared on "Tormented" by Marcie Free: "In the interest of keeping the peace -No Comment here".


"Blown" (Ulftone)

Rating: 70

Dirty Deeds decided to shorten the name into Deeds ("We have cleaned up. We’re not ‘Dirty’ anymore" is the statement) and now the first album under the new monicker (third of discography) produeced once again by da Steve Harris of Iron Maiden (years ago they toured together).

The style has partially changed, growing darker and more personal but not to give a sharp cut with the past, the band offers tracks like "Fire At Will", "End Of Days" (inspired by the events of 11th September 2001 in NY), "Meet Your Maker" (classic hard rocker, simple and catchy that must sound huge on stage) and "Valley Of The Kings".

Anyway, Deeds open their cd with "Fragments Of A Man" whose riff in clear Iron Maiden fashion is surrounded by changes of time and atmospheres having in common one sense of obscure and suffering that’s present also in "River Run Dry" with it guitar riffs in pure NWOBHM style (and also the sound quality recalls that age).

"Loaded Gun" alternates slow passages with more dynamic and explosive ones, "Blood Red Sky" recalls of The Almighty in the verse, but bridge and refrain are more helaborated and melodic and also the solo is more metal oriented.

"Burning Away", with those dark and compressed souds (sometimes I feel similitudes with early Ozzy gone solo), closes a more mature cd under the songwriting perspective that should work fine on stage, but in me it hasn’t grown too much in me.



"B1G" (Z Records)

Rating: 70

"B1G" is nothing else than the third Melodica studio album (name changed for conctractual reasons?), ten songs softening even more the artistic approach of Poley and Pichler to rock music and suffering of a very weak production.

The tracks themselves are neither terrifying nor to throw away, but too often they miss that quid to please ear and curiosity: they might work fine for an easy listening in the daily affairs, at least had they a less disturbing soud.

Anyway I understand that Pichler knows his guitar well and how to make it ‘sing’, and this is enough to raise the rating of songs like "I Love You" and "Elton John", but I also feel something’s missing as in the last track "Don’t Spread Your Lies" (with a refrain really really close to Night Ranger) or in "How Many Nights".

All in all it’s not a collection of ugly songs or badly performed, but cd cost so don’t put this album on the top of your buying list.

VAUGHN "Forever Live" (Z Records) Rating: 75

This live cd by the band headed by ex Tyketto voice Danny Vaughn was recorded during the recent two shows in England, with no studio tricks and also the sound is quite raw (anyway better than the above mentioned Poley/Pichler new album!!!) and straight.

Eleven are the song included, among which we find two tributes to Tyketto called "Wings" and "Forever Young" both performed in acoustic version.

There’s no doubt about the fun on stage and give the listener a very good impression, so if you want to hear how Vaughn & Co play live, you’ll find also "Bad Water", "Fly Away", "Million Miles Of Road", "Haunted" and "Rescue Me", waiting for the forthcoming new studio album.


"The Eyes Never Lie" (Generation Records)

Rating: 65

I left the Sinopolis brothers involved in the quite disappointing Angry Tears debut cd with Jack Ponti (Surgin, Baton Rouge, etc) labelled by Escape Music in year 2000, and today I find them on this 12-tracks cd only once of which was written with Ponti and another one is a cover, but today Joey sings much better than in Angry Tears' days!

The album starts firing since opener "When I Get Home" that sounds like a mix between Alice Cooper (mid '80s) and early The Almighty, so old and bloody US party hard rock, then we have the insipid mid tempo "It’s Too Late" and the power ballad "Be My Lover" that need a much better production and a quite different singer to be noted.

Things get better with "Got Me Going" (again Alice Cooper circa "Trash" in the refrain) filled with energy that also is featured on the classic r'n'r "Let’s Get The Party Started", while "Tell It To Me Baby" might be a coarse answer to REO Speedwagon and "American Dream" is a typical dramatic hard rock ballad that deserves a much better sound.

It's a pity for the poor production (good for a minor league demo) that doesn't let songs fly high (only the cheerful and danceable party rock "Love On The Terrace" has with surprise a decent sound) and the average writing quality, so Sinopoli won't pass the test of time.