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JOHN WEST Long Time No Sing Frontiers (2006)

John West is perhaps better known for his powerful vocals on Artensionís progressive metal releases and more lately on Royal Huntís progressive rock releases but if anything this release harkens back to his first major band - Badlands. John didnít release any material with Badlands though after joining due to the premature death of vocalist Ray Gillen.

This release is features a melodic song orientated approach bringing to mind the aforementioned Badlands and Glenn Hughes amongst others. The guitar playing is very bluesy and features some excellent soloing. John himself is credited with playing lead guitar but is assisted by Chris Caffrey of Savatage and Kevin Hampton.

The album opens with a short church organ intro before leading into probably the best track on the album 'Fade' which has a dark feel to it. 'Give Me A Sign' is another excellent blues rock number. 'Highway To Roppongi' is laid back, whilst 'One More Lie' gives us a reminder of Johnís powerful vocals during the chorus.

The album closes on a low note with a bland ballad 'Better Believe' and the mellow instrumental 'Puerto Amour'.

Overall - a grower of an album but more blues/melodic rock in nature than Johnís usual style.


Review by Phil Berisford

***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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