HARDLINE – DANGER ZONE

Released 18 May 2012 on Frontiers

Yet another band returns without a key member. On this album, singer Johnny is the only remaining Gioeli brother, accompanied by a European band (no doubt at the request of Frontiers head honcho Perugino). Not that it makes a big difference… The music remains classy AOR. Johnny is a great singer, and it’s a treat to enjoy his voice without the incompetent wailing of Axel Rudi Pell to distract.

Pick a song, any song, they’re all good. Whether it’s “10.000 Reasons”, “What I’d Like” or “Stay”, this is some of the best AOR I’ve heard in quite a while. Thorsten Koehne is a fine guitarist, who can hang with the best of the genre. I really like songwriter Alessandro Del Vecchio’s keyboard stylings as well. He goes for the big sonic tapestry and pulls it off with panache. Surprisingly there’s no big ballad. “Please Have Faith In Me” is as close as it gets.

Frontiers may have released some less than excellent albums of late, but this one is a heavy hitter.

Rating – 90%
Review by Sancho

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