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Saturday, May 14, 2011

Brief News Update for Saturday 14th May, 2011

Hi folks, well you probably guessed there's been loads going on for me, hence lack of updates and you'd be right, but .... has also been down for maintenance each time I did have time to login, so it prevented me updating the site at that time.
Anyway, yes, I was working away from home this past week, lengthy days nowhere near a PC and when I did get done, I was wiped out and then at other times hit the issue!
So, here we go, it's Saturday and FA Cup final day in England, this year it's the revitalised Manchester City, who now with loads of money behind them have had possibly their best season in years, will be facing Stoke City, who've just completed their first season in the UK's Premier League. Good luck guys!

This news update is going to be my last for a week, as the family is taking a vacation and believe me, Rhonda and I can't wait to get some time off work that's for this specific reason ... Vacation!
So, make the most of this update - Even if some of it is possibly news you've already seen elsewhere this week! - and I'll be back in a week! Cheers, Al


Wednesday, 11 May 2011 - It’s OFFICIAL – the first confirmed VAN HALEN tourdates for 2011 have been announced! VAN HALEN will headline SOUNDWAVE REVOLUTION, an annual music festival held in major cities around Australia.

The 5 confirmed festival dates are:

Brisbane – September 24
Sydney – September 25
Melbourne – September 30
Adelaide – October 1
Perth – October 3

SOUNDWAVE REVOLUTION Full Line-up for 2011:ACTS ANNOUNCED TODAY (Announced May 11th at 9pm in Australia, 7am EST in U.S.)

Van Halen (with David Lee Roth)
Alice Cooper
Machine Head
Bad Religion
Alter Bridge
Versa Emerge
Sisters of Mercy
The Pretty Reckless

Dashboard Confessional, Hatebreed, Cro-Mags, Funeral for a Friend, Steel Panther, Sum 41 and Hellyeah

For more information, visit the festival’s official web site:

Alterbridge tweets:
“We are beyond excited to announce we will be rocking Australia in Sept/Oct on the same stage as Van Halen!”

Scott Ian’s tweets:
@Scott_Ian Soundwave Revolution lineup. Playing with Van Halen. HOLY CRAP!!!

Story source:

Editor's comments:
I guess the world will now wait and watch to see if the band will play any other countries this year.
My guess is, since it's possibly too late to book US Summer dates with venues already mostly pre-booked, that we'll see here Fall arena shows, that's my guess anyway but of course I've been proven wrong before!
I'd also hazard a guess that perhaps 'the' new album will materialize in Spring next year, followed by European dates in the Summer of 2012.
With all the stories of Eddie not being happy with what Diamond Dave Lee Roth had presented so far, causing the delays.

Sammy Hagar to hit the road this summer with The Wabos

Meantime, while all the speculation is doing the rounds on will they or won't they tour here or there, former Van Halen frontman, Sammy Hagar who 'loves' to play live, is starting to line up a few summer US dates of his own. So he at least doesn't look like he's going to let US fans down.

He's hitting the road on the back of his successfully launched autobiography, 'My Uncensored Life In Rock,' book, which has already been causing a stir here and there for one reason or another.

At this time Sammy and the Wabo's have only confirmed a few shows, which are as follows:

June 2011
Fri 06/03/11 El Paso, TX Speaking Rock Entertainment Center
Sat 06/04/11 Tucson, AZ Anselmo Valencia Tori Amphitheatre

September 2011
Fri 09/09/11 Murphys, CA Ironstone Vineyards

Official website:


~Two-Disc Set, Notes From San Francisco, To Land May 17 Via Eagle Rock Entertainment ~
~Lavish Package Includes Never-Before-Released 1979 Concert!~

The story goes that Jimi Hendrix was once asked what it was like to be the greatest guitarist in the world, to which he replied, “I don’t know, go ask Rory Gallagher!”

Rory Gallagher (1948-1995) is simply one of the all-time guitar greats. Slash, The Edge, Brian May, Johnny Marr, Janick Gers, Ritchie Blackmore, Glenn Tipton and Vivian Campbell have all said it. Since practically inventing the Power Trio format in Taste (both Cream and Taste debuted in 1966), Gallagher’s music has stood the test of time and he’s as popular now as he ever was, his influence gargantuan.

The story of Rory’s lost San Francisco album actually starts in Japan. In November 1977, after a grueling six-month world tour, the band flew straight from their last show in Japan to San Francisco to begin working on a new album with famed American producer Elliot Mazer (who worked on Neil Young’s Harvest, Big Brother & The Holding Company’s Cheap Thrills and The Band’s The Last Waltz). Mazer recalls the sessions grew “tense,” as Gallagher thought the mixing process “too complicated.” By the end of January 1978, he had shelved the whole record and broke up his band of the past five years.

Fast forward to 2011 when Rory’s brother/manager Donal allowed his son Daniel to recover the album from the Gallagher archive and begin the process of mixing it with his engineer. Rory said in 1992 he hoped the album would surface one day but only if it were remixed. Bingo. Hearing this historic never-before-issued studio album from a key period of Gallagher’s career (the album that would have been released between Calling Card and Photo Finish) is the Holy Grail for Rory’s fans.

CD #2 is another fabulous discovery: a blistering live album taken from four December nights in 1979 at San Francisco’s The Old Waldorf. In the audience Van Morrison, on stage Rory Gallagher (guitar/vocals), Gerry McAvoy (bass) and Ted McKenna (drums). Daniel Gallagher chose to add the live side to highlight why Rory chose to shelve the studio album and reduce his band back down to a three-piece. Rory, after seeing The Sex Pistols at Winterland during final mixes for his own album, was struck by the stark drama and blunt primitivism of pure punk. “It was as close to Eddie Cochran as you’re going to get,'' he enthused. He had been saying that he wanted to get back to what he called “meat’n’potato rock’n’roll,” a stripped-back primal raw immediacy hearkening back to his Taste days.

A street has been named after him in Paris; a corner in Dublin; a statue in his Ballyshannon birthplace, where The International Rory Gallagher Tribute Festival is held. There’s a Rory Gallagher Place and Rory Gallagher Music Library in Cork. Annual tributes are held in Germany and Japan. The man has sold in excess of 20 million albums. Notes From San Francisco [MSRP $17.98] will be a worthy addition to his canon.

Track Listing:

1. Rue The Day
2. Persuasion
3. B Girl
4. Mississippi Sheiks
5. Wheels Within Wheels
6. Overnight Bag
7. Cruise On Out
8. Brute Force & Ignorance
9. Fuel To The Fire

10. Wheels Within Wheels (Alt version)
11. Cut A Dash
12. Out On The Tiles

1. Follow Me
2. Shinkicker
3. Off The Handle
4. Bought And Sold
5. I’m Leavin’
6. Tattoo’d Lady
7. Do You Read Me
8. Country Mile
9. Calling Card
10. Shadow Play
11. Bullfrog Blues
12. Sea Cruise

As a taster, here's some samples:
Album Trailer (Video)
Rue The Day (Studio-Audio)
Follow Me (Live-Audio)

Official artist website:

Three new Reissues for Thin Lizzy fans

Following the success of the last three remixed / remastered Thin Lizzy releases earlier this year in, Jailbreak, Johnny The Fox and Live and Dangerous, there's three other Lizzy classic's about to be re-launched.

On June 26th, 2011 Lizzy fan's will be able to hear Black Rose, Bad Reputation and Chinatown reissued, remastered and with added bonus tracks.

Bad Reputation will be just one disc with six bonus tracks, but both Black Rose and Chinatown will be two disc sets, with surely the most exciting news for Lizzy fans being that Black Rose will actually feature two completely never before released tracks in any shape or form!
The other tracks are unreleased live tracks, studio outtakes, radio sessions or b-sides.
The full details as follows:

The next batch of reissues!

Great news! The next batch of reissues have been announced! Bad Reputation, Black Rose and Chinatown and are due in the shops on 26th June and they all come packaged with a stack of bonus material made up of BBC sessions and unreleased versions and live recordings. All handpicked by the band!

Bad Reputation
1- Soldier Of Fortune
2- Bad Reputation
3- Opium Trail
4- Southbound
5- Dancing In The Moonlight (It Caught Me In A Spotlight)
6- Killer Without Cause
7- Downtown Sundown
8- That Women’s Gonna Break Your Heart
9- Dear Lord
Bonus Tracks:
10- Killer Without A Cause BBC Session 01/08/1977
11- Bad Reputation BBC Session 01/08/1977
12- That Woman's Gonna Break Your Heart BBC Session 01/08/1977
13- Dancing In The Moonlight (It's Caught Me In A Spotlight) BBC Session 01/08/1977
14- Downtown Sundown BBC Session 01/08/1977
15- Me And The Boys (soundcheck)

Black Rose
Disc One
1- Do Anything You Want To Do
2- Toughest Street In Town
3- S & M
4- Waiting For An Alibi
5- Sarah
6- Got To Give It Up
7- Get Out Of Here
8- With Love
9- A Roisin Dubh (Black Rose) A Rock Legend
Part One: Shenandoah
Part Two: Will You Go Lassie Go
Part Three: Danny Boy
Part Four: The Mason's Apron

Disc Two
1- Just The Two Of Us B-Side
2- A Night In The Life Of A Blues Singer (longer version)
3- Rock Your Love (unreleased)
4- Don't Believe A Word (slow version Phil and Gary vocals)
5- Toughest Street In Town (different version) -
1978 Nassau Session Versions
6- S & M
7- Got To Give It Up
8- Cold Black Night (unreleased)
9- With Love
Black Rose
Part One: Shenandoah
Part Two: Will You Go Lassie Go
Part Three: Danny Boy
Part Four: The Mason's Apron

Disc One
1- We Will Be Strong
2- Chinatown
3- Sweetheart
4- Sugar Blues
5- Killer On The Loose
6- Having A Good Time
7- Genocide (The Killing Of The Buffalo)
8- Didn't I
9- Hey You

Disc Two
1- Don't Play Around – B-Side
2- We Will Be Strong - Single (WBS49679)
3- Sugar Blues - Chinatown 7" single
4- Whiskey In The Jar - Nineteen 7" single double pack
5- Are You Ready - Killers live 7" single
6- Chinatown - Killer on the loose 7" single
7- Got To Give It Up - Killer on the loose 7" single
8- Dear Miss Lonely Hearts - Killers live 7" single
9- Killer On The Loose - Thunder and lightning bonus LP
10- Chinatown (edited version)
11- Hey You (edited version)
12- We Will Be Strong - Demo
13- Chinatown - Demo
14- Don't Play Around - Soundcheck - Hammersmith 29/5/8
15- Sweetheart -Soundcheck - Hammersmith 29/5/8
16- Didn't I - Soundcheck – Cork
17- Hey You – soundcheck - Cork



FULLFORCE was formed in 2009 and now consists of members Mike Andersson (Cloudscape, Vocals), Stefan Elmgren (ex Hammerfall, Guitars), Anders Johansson (Hammerfall, ex Yngwie J. Malmsteen, Drums), CJ Grimmark (ex Narnia, Guitars) and Tommy Larsson (ex Heed, Bass). The Swedish five-piece started to write songs in order to complete their debut album and they describe their music to be a genuine blend of traditional, catchy heavy metal to more updated melodic metal with some ethnic touches which will make them a standout to within the genre. The band truly believes in their music and in late 2010 they completed the recording of 12 songs to be included on "One".

"After being in contact with a few interested labels during these last months, we are happy to announce the decision of becoming a part of the SPV family! SPV is a label with a great Metal tradition and it's an honor for FULLFORCE to join forces with them for the release of our debut album "One". In SPV we see a good vision and a great future for FULLFORCE...this is the best thing that could have happened to us!"
(Mike Andersson, FULLFORCE vocalist)

"There are always reservations regarding bands with ex-members of well known bands but with FULLFORCE it´s different. I think that a lot of people will be very surprised when they hear the songs. It´s great to have the band on our roster and I´m sure that there is a bright future for the band."
(Olly Hahn, A&R SPV Steamhammer)

FULLFORCE - "One" Tracklisting:
1 Mythomaniac (4:02)
2 None Of Your Concern (3:35)
3 Heart And Soul (3:31)
4 Oblivion (4:53)
5 Open Your Eyes (4:25)
6 Rain (4:33)
7 Suffering In Silence (3:06)
8 Walls Of Secrets (4:33)
9 Father spirit (4:51)
10 Bleed (5:07)
11 Into The Cradle (5:01)

iTunes Bonus Track:
Best Of Times (3:49)

The album "One" will be released through SPV/Steamhammer on July 26th in USA/Canada.

For more info visit:


MAY 14, 2011 - It is with great regret we must inform all STRYPER fans in Mexico that the band has had to cancel the scheduled dates listed as follows:

•May 26: Teatro Estudio Cavaret - Guadalajara

•May 27: Centro Banamex - Mexico City

•May 28: Escenica Live - Monterrey

Although ready, willing and able to perform, the promoter had made this impossible by not fulfilling his contractual obligations to the band. While this cancellation is quite disappointing to STRYPER, management and agency, the process of rescheduling shows in Mexico is underway. It is important and necessary that all STRYPER fans in Mexico understand the bands dedication to their fans around the world, and their obligation to honor their word and commitments.
Best Regards,
John Greenberg
Union Entertainment


The voice rides high. Melodic. Beautiful. Everything everybody ever loved about Christopher Cross is on display in the 13 exquisite tracks of Doctor Faith, being released May 10 by Eagle Rock Entertainment (through earMusic).

It marks the first all-new studio offering from Christopher Cross in 12 years.Thirty-one years, five Grammys and an Oscar later, Doctor Faith is a dramatic return. His songwriting has never been sharper, more observant. His singing is better than it’s ever been. The production, for the first time, is guitar-oriented, rather than keyboard-oriented. Michael McDonald is on hand to give voice to the title character.

“This album not only feels like a new chapter to my career,” says Cross, “it feels like starting a whole new book.” Cross has dedicated the album to Joni Mitchell “for a lifetime of inspiration.” Influenced by Mitchell’s idiosyncratic way with a lyric line, and the guts to delve deep, Cross, and long time songwriting partner Rob Meurer, have written some songs sure to be instant classics.

Opener “Hey Kid” lays it all out:  optimistic yet cautious, forward-thinking yet imbued with a world-weary voice-of-experience, it sets the tone for such profundities as “I’m Too Old For This,” “Poor Man’s Ecstasy,” “Still I Resist” and the title track.
One of the recurring themes of the album is the search for peace by making peace within one’s self.
Cross landed loud and large on the music scene in 1980, winning the Grammy for “Best New Artist.”  “Sailing” and “Arthur’s Theme (Best That You Can Do)” were both #1s, the latter co-written with Burt Bacharach, Carole Bayer Sager, and the late Peter Allen.
Cross charted eight times between 1980 and 1983.
He has eight albums to his credit, as well as a number of other packages. Through it all, he’s maintained his high level of excellence, also singing, writing and performing with other artists.

Track Listing:
1.)    Hey Kid
2.)  I’m Too Old For this
3.)  When You Come Home
4.)  Dreamers
5.)  November
6.)  Leave It To Me
7.)  Doctor Faith
8.)  Rescue
9.)  Help Me Cry
10.) Still I Resist
11.) Poor Man’s Ecstasy
12.) Everything
13.) Prayin’ 

 Doctor Faith (Full Album Listening Party)
Faith (Audio)
Kid (Audio)
EPK (Video)

Official website:

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Poodles - Performocracy album review

The Poodles - Performocracy album review
Released on: Frontiers records. Release date: Available now.
Performocracy, is Swedish band The Poodles fourth studio album but fifth album overall, when you include last years excellent ‘No Quarter’ live release. I must also add that last years DVD, ‘In The Flesh’ is very much worth getting hold of. There’s some great fun stuff on that too, good interview material and their impressive live performance as well.

The current band line up features the rather talented Jakob Samuel on Vocals, Christian Lundqvist (Drums), Pontus Egberg on Bass and newest member Henrik Bergqvist on Guitars, rounding things off.

The band have been around since late 2005, starting originally with guitarist Pontus Norgren (Great King Rat, Hammerfall, Talisman), who departed the band around 2007.
They at times bring to mind for me, The Scorpions meets Europe in the latters current harder / edgy rocking style.

The album opens with ‘I Want It All,’ a track that is true to the bands style of hard rocking, with fantastic big hook lines and it does no wrong in my book, a great start!

‘Until Our Kingdom Falls’ next is once more filled with great melodies, hard rock and a stunning big sound.

With ‘Father To A Son’ it just continues on the same path with strong, passionate lead vocals from Jakob Samuel and then a huge big chorus, with a nice guitar harmony line in support and then an absolutely stunning guitar solo.

If you like a more metal edge sound, then next track ‘I Believe in You’ more than provides that from the opening riffs and heavy dark verses and then the pre-chorus and chorus itself throws in the big melodies that this band masters so well.

One of the things that is apparent, is the bands very clever splattering of keyboards throughout and on ‘Cuts Like A Knife’ it’s very obvious with helping the texture of the song, even with some still dark and heavy moments.
Once more, what a huge chorus they muster up. Great stuff, hard rock and metal with such superb melody interwoven!

The excellent big old power ballad that is ‘As Time Is Passing,’ is next and this is simply stunning.
What else can I tell you?!

OK, this isn’t meant as any dig at the band, but ‘Love Is All’ next really makes me think of U2 … Quite a laid back and atmospheric track. Possibly the least ‘jump out at you’ type track here, but still it’s well done.

Back to the mid to up tempo rocking of ‘Your Time Is Now’ which starts hard, then eases back and then of course pick up in the pre-chorus and chorus, before hitting the ballad like bridge that leads into a big old raw guitar solo. A multi-layered track indeed!

‘Action’ next starts quietly, building with keyboards, then guitars and drums and it at times borders on prog metal, which the album tends to do a lot its latter half.

With ‘Bring Back The Night’ it starts simply with just Jakob’s vocal and then it grows into another good track, plenty of musical muscle here.

‘Vampire’s Call’ starts with an almost tribal drum beat and then the track grows into a steady rocker.

I love the intro to ‘Into the Quiet Night,’ clever atmospherics before getting into the track proper and it’s pretty much ballad style except for the chorus where it picks up some. It’s kind of power ballad territory, although the chorus is perhaps a little heavy to be a true power ballad.

‘Don’t Tell Me,’ which is the last track here – Identified as a bonus. – starts eerily before kicking in with darkly laden riffs and then picking up some more in the pre-chorus and then the full chorus, before getting quite dark again.

I do really like the album, but I will say that the first half seems very much stronger than the latter, which almost seems a little experimental musically at times and although it’s still good, it seems to lose a lot of the hook lines early on, that are simply …, GREAT!
All that said, it really does warrant the rating I’m giving here. If the latter half had continued as the first, this could’ve possibly been my album of the year. Still it’s great stuff from a very talented band. Would love to see them live!

Rating: 4 out of 5

Official weblinks:

Brief News Update for Wednesday 11th May, 2011


NEW YORK - To mark the 25th anniversary of its release, seminal prog-rockers Pallas have issued the long-awaited sequel their"The Sentinel" album, "XXV," on Music Theories Recordings.

"XXV" picks up where "The Sentinel," a concept album that incorporated a futuristic version of the tale of Atlantis along with Cold War-influenced themes, left off. The album's first track, "Falling Down," bridges the two releases.

The album's second song, "Crash and Burn," is where the story starts to unfold. "The lyrics set the scene in 'Falling Down' and now we cut away in cinematic terms to a very dramatic sequence of the story," explained bassist/guitarist Graeme Murray. "Once again the human race is in dire straits. The Koreans are at war, the Middle Eastern Muslim states have banded together to form the United Islamic alliance, the planet is beset with ecological problems, and the world banking system has all but collapsed. Business as usual!"

"XXV" represents a mature band with consistently impressive writing skills, and top-notch musicianship to match. "I am immensely proud of 'XXV' and feel that we have produced one of the finest and most cohesive Pallas albums ever," Murray said. European critics have agreed, stating that "XXV" is a contender for prog album of the year.

Though "XXV" is a sequel to the hugely successful debut, let there be no mistake: Pallas has remained active over the last quarter-century, writing, recording, and releasing a number of albums. The Scottish band did, however, replace its longtime vocalist Alan Reed with Paul Mackie just before the recording of "XXV." Though it was a risky decision, fans will certainly have no worries once they hear Mackie's powerful performance on "XXV."

"I think people were very apprehensive about Paul after the press announcement that we had parted with Alan, but once people heard the album most of them have very positive about Paul's voice and his charisma and presence on stage," Murray said. "The band is certainly a happier place these days, and we feel we have made the transition to a new lead voice successfully."

Pallas headlineed the IO Pages Festival in the Netherlands on April 15.

Music theories Recordings is a subsidiary of Mascot Records, an independent record company based in The Netherlands that specializes in guitar music, from metal to instrumental guitar, hard rock, prog rock and (guitar) fusion.
Official links

Official Statement from Black Robot on band upheaval

Black Robot, the band put together by founding Buckcherry bassist, Jonathan “JB” Brightman, who had  recruited Detroit-bred front man, Huck Johns to his dream of a comic book type created band. - Hence the Black Robot image.
An album was soon in the works, with the others players Yogi Lonich and Devon Glenn, both Buckcherry alumni, guitarist Andy Andersson, Darren Dodd and Chris Powell also lending their solid stick work on percussion, and session keyboard wizard, Fred Mandell (Elton John, Pink Floyd, Queen) adding some tasty ivory magic to the mix ... So described what they had ...
The album released last year, wasn't bad at all, really - You can read my review of it here: - but now it seems change is afoot amidst the band having been working on their follow up album ...
The band have issued the following statement through both their Facebook and MySpace pages:

"On May 4th, 2011 our former singer, Huck Johns announced his resignation from Black Robot through his personal Facebook page. Huck's status update indicated his intention to start a new band. We are currently working on the next Black Robot record which we are very excited about.
We will be announcing news of our new singer and official updates here and on the official Black Robot Facebook page at


May 7, 2011 - Tonight we are in Medina, MN at the Medina Entertainment Center and we are working up some different tunes at sound check today for the show.

After 20 years of the fan's requesting, we may even pull out a new live rendition of "Love Me" off the first album! Jeff Keith was open to singing yesterday after I started messing around with the riff yesterday for the VIP who requested it. If it's not ready for tonight's show, expect it to come in the next few weeks. We still can't believe that it's been 25 years since Mechanical Resonance came out.

A few other songs we are practicing today for the show tonight will be "Paradise", "PVT Ledbetter" and a few some from Forever More. Then we are flying back home Sunday to play the KINGS rally on tuesday at Ceasar Chavez park downtown Sacramento. Be advised that we are only playing 2 songs that day...probably "Signs" and "Love Song" which has seem to become the KING'S anthem to stay in Sacramento. It is a KING's rally...NOT a TESLA don't expect more than 2 songs.

Some other news: "Twisted Wires & the acoustic sessions ..." album is done and all the pieces are being put together now for a release in July. "Second Street" is becoming a favorite in the show. We will be attending a dinner for the survivors of the Station Fire in Rhode Island before heading to Hampton Beach next week for a SOLD OUT show at Casino Ballroom...we love that gig! always a sold out show there...great fans in NH area.
Ok more news to come, stay tuned.
~ Frank Hannon

Monday, May 9, 2011

John Elefante and Mastedon – Revolution of Mind album review

John Elefante and Mastedon – Revolution of Mind album review
Released on: Big 3 Records. Release date: Available now.

John Elefante is a vocalist with just a little pedigree, the man replaced Kansas front-man Steve Walsh, when Walsh decided he wanted a change of scenery and went on to do the Streets project. Streets included ex-City Boy (UK pop / rock band) mainman, Mike Slamer (Who’s since gone onto many other AOR / rock projects), also Billy Greer (Now in Kansas, alongside Walsh again.) and Tim Gehrt.
Editors note: An excellent project too by the way!

Elefante stepped into Kansas in 1982 and the band recorded ‘Vinyl Confessions,’ which in fact was the bands most successful album since ‘Point of Know Return’ and got their first Top 20 hit single in a few years with, ‘Play the Game Tonight.’

1983 spawned ‘Drastic Measures,’ again featuring Elefante on vocals and Kansas began to capture a whole new audience with Elefante and fellow Christian band member in Kerry Livgren with some very strong Christian written material, that musically kept old fans happy, while also reaching a whole new crowd for Kansas.
Another hit single, though not as big as the last, came in ‘Fight Fire With Fire.’
A ‘Greatest Hit’s’ release in 1984 wrapped up Elefante’s last work with Kansas and he went on to develop a strong Christian pop / rock career as a solo artist, after briefly hooking up with Christian rockers Petra.

He did play with other acts, Mastedon and Guardian, before dabbling into the musical field as a producer, even building a popular recording studio in Nashville alongside his brother Dino Elefante.

So now you have some background on the man, let’s move onto his latest release, ‘Revolution of Mind,’ which in fact was already released in Europe through the Frontiers label, under the band name Mastedon, as the band’s third release, hence why it came out over there as ‘3.’

Why this has not been released here before now, beats me. – Actually it did get a low key release late last year. I was only made aware of it’s official release here, around February / March of this year, but it’s a great album and if you’re a fan of his period in Kansas, of course you’ll like it, but I’d go so far as to say if you’re a fan of say Joe Lynn Turner era Rainbow / Deep Purple and even say Boston, then you’ll find a lot here to appeal. I also hear similarities in Elefante’s voice to Turner’s, no bad thing either!

There’s some impressive talent on the album too featuring Dave Amato (Ted Nugent, REO Speedwagon, Jimmy Barnes) and Kerry Livgren (Kansas, Proto-Kaw) on lead guitars, Anthony Sallee (White Heart, Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith) on bass and Dan Needham on drums. John’s brother Dino steps in too, on backing vocals, guitars, etc. John handles all lead vocals, keyboards and some guitar work too.

Opening with the powerful Hammond organ driven title track ‘Revolution of Mind,’ it’s grabs you right from the off, this indeed is a drivin’ track, with perhaps a more commercial sound. Big vocals, loads of melody, nice one!

‘Slay Your Demons’ next has a little mystical sound to it that reminds me at times of Ritchie Blackmore’s material and a serious almost shredding like guitar solo. This is a heavily harmony driven vocal song. Keep it coming …

A haunting guitar intro leads ‘Nowhere Without Your Love’ next and this track is one of those again that remind me of something else that I can’t put my finger on, but it’s a fantastic track that grows into an almost Boston like sound – Think ‘A Man I’ll Never Be.’ – and overall this is an immense track that really, REALLY deserves to be heard by anyone that enjoys melodic rock.

To me, there’s a very Kansas feel to ‘One Day Down By the Lake (See you Real Soon.)' and this one really is an epic, clocking in at over ten minutes! There’s so much to this track so huge kudo’s to John and the band on this, but seriously, the album command complete respect. I love it!
Loads of tempo changes, plenty of light and intriguing interchanges, it’s just great!

A rocking track next in ‘Water Into Wine (Fassa Rokka)’ that even gives reference to Pink Floyd’s ‘Dark Side of the Moon!’ Why not I guess … Good change of pace to add to the albums variety and nice guitar work once again.

‘Questions (It’s About Time),’ is a little more of a steady paced pop / rock track, once again, the track captures big melodies in the vocal harmonizing.

My previous comments on John’s voice similarities to Joe Lynn Turner come to mind again on ‘You Can’t Take Anything’ next and it’s another very hook laden sound once more. A mid paced track that takes things down in the middle then comes back in again picking up the pace and hints at Foreigner a little here too!

‘Lying’ starts big and then eases back into a steady paced pop rocker and it’s again no complaints here, it just keeps the great material coming!

The Hammond organ is present throughout the album obviously at different levels and perhaps I’m biased, but I love it and it works so well with the material present on the album and this is something that’s all too true on next track ‘The Western World.’
A steady paced number that keeps things in sync with the majority of material on display here.

Final track here is ‘That’s What You Do,’ which sounds a little edgy, yet still melodic of course and rocks at mid pace.
You know at times I’d even go so far as to say John sometimes phrases the vocals a little like Paul Carrick would do in Mike and the Mechanics, so clearly you get the idea that the album overall captures – perhaps – various influences that should really keep your melodic rock fan very happy.

This really is an enjoyable album and for me, it’s the first time I’ve heard John Elefante since his Kansas days, so yes you guessed it, I do recommend this one to melodic rock fans everywhere, although chances are, most already have it!

It’s not out and out catchy, sure some things take a little while, but there’s plenty here that will grow on you and the rest should grab you right away and yes, you can understand why the band picked John to replace Steve Walsh, as their vocal styles are of course often similar.
Good one John, now how about another one along these lines!

Rating: 4 out of 5

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