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JOE LYNN TURNER Second Hand Life
Frontiers (2007)

Joe Lynn Turner

Joe Lynn Turner cannot be accused of ever taking the easy route to rock notoriety. Following the likes of Ronnie James Dio into Rainbow, then directly replacing Ian Gillan for Deep Purple's 1989 release Slaves And Masters perhaps isn't the ideal way of endearing yourself to fans but on both occasions he produced works of some merit and success.

Lately Turner's been able to stamp more of his own identity onto his own releases and has been prolific to say the least. His collaboration with Glenn Hughes in HTP received some long-overdue critical acclaim and he's even released a couple of covers albums worth hearing and not many artists can claim that.

Signed now to the Italian Frontiers label his latest solo album bows to fan's requests and is a fully blown melodic rock opus of a standard befitting his experience and stature in the business.

Whether its polished rockers like the opening track Love Is Life, Over The Top or Sweet Obsession of the Foreigner style big ballads in the shape of In Your Eyes, Cruel or Love Is On Our Side the level of competence is abuntantly clear.

Deep Purple fans will be interested in the track Stroke Of Midnight. Co-written with Ritchie Blackmore, Roger Glover and Survivor's Jim Peterik it was originally for the follow up to Slaves And Masters and parts turned up on One Man's Meat on The Battle Rages On with Gillan back in the fold.

Highlight of the album by far though is the eastern flavoured Blood Red Sky. Rainbow like in all the right ways guitarist Karl Cochran introduces himself as a guitarist of note whilst Turner produces a stellar performance.

For melodic rock fans this is a release well worth hearing, for latter day Rainbow fans it's essential.


Review by Bill Leslie

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***** 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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