Thursday, April 15, 2021

CALL ME - Call Me (1981)

CALL ME - Call Me (1981) Germany LP front
Requested in "REQUEST & FILL CORNER" section...

I first discovered German band CALL ME in the legendary compilation series Munich City Nights, then got a LP-rip of their self-titled debut album in a trade, and finally found that the record actually was released on CD on the RCA/BMG label during the Nineties, but in very limited quantities.
Whichever the case, "Call Me" is an obscure, unknown AOR / Melodic Rock rarity deserving to be listened by all fans of the genre.
That's why we are here, isn't it?

Despite its German origins, I would say Call Me's melodic tunes sound more Canadian than anything, with synth harpoon attacks between the sharp melodic riffs and catchy choruses.
Just check the triad of tracks at the beginning of the album: the soaring "Running Out Of Love", the indeed shaking "Shiver In The Night" akin Survivor, or the keyboard driven "22 Degrees Below", all are pure early '80s AOR gemstones.

"Loneliness And The Modern Man" is perhaps the more 'American' song on the album with a mysterious atmosphere (thanks to the synth background), and "Living On The Edge" returns to pure AOR again with a Canadian feeling via nice choruses, bringing to mind Refugee.

CALL ME - Call Me (1981) Germany LP back

"Suburbia" is darker yet rocking, "Nervous Energy" adds a radio-rock poppy touch to the proceedings, while "Working Wonders" adds a light proggy touch in the vein of Harlequin.
If you need a ballad, "Screaming Silence" provides a slow moment by not in typical syrupy balladry. It's a sound with British feeling to me, but somehow I found it similar to some material Tony Carey would release as solo artist years after.

All are very well crafted songs, the musicianship is strong (I love that 'classic drums' sound) and while Daniel Kovac's vocal color is not the most charismatic you can find out there, he perfectly fits the music and provides a distinctive sound to Call Me.
In fact, I have included one track in my AOR Treasures series, the one entitled 'The Seminal Years', because Call Me sound is the type which defined the genre in the beginning of the Eighties.

CALL ME - Call Me (1981) Germany bootleg CD

As said, "Call Me" appeared on CD but I never seen a copy at auction sites. This is taken from the unofficial CD released by bootleg label Time Warp, and as usual with these guys, the sound obtained from the vinyl LP is bloody good.
A little gem. Rare.


01 - Running Out Of Love
02 - Shiver In The Night
03 - 22 Degrees Below
04 - Getting By
05 - Suburbia
06 - Nervous Energy
07 - Loneliness And The Modern Man
08 - Living On The Edge
09 - Working Wonders
10 - Screaming Silence

Daniel Kovac - vocals
Frank Ziener - guitars, backing vocals
Attila Teri - keyboards, piano
Manfred Dietze - bass
Florian Ruppert - drums




CALL ME - Call Me (1981) HERE
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Tuesday, April 06, 2021

ZOID: LP 1987 + EP 1988 + Demos

ZOID: LP 1987 + EP 1988 + Demos - front
Requested in "REQUEST & FILL CORNER" section...

On par to the Californian counterpart, during the '80s there was an effervescent Rock scene in the US East Coast as well. Melodic rockers ZOID come from there, more exactly Syracuse, NY, also the home of well known acts for this blog such as Todd Hobin & The Heat or Benny Mardones, among others.
Founded by brothers Lou (keyboards) and Mike (drums) Secreti, seems Zoid were quite popular in the area in the mid-Eighties. They managed to release this self-titled, 8-track LP in 1987, which over the years has become a collectors piece ($170 on eBay).

"Zoid" delivers the typical Melodic Hard Rock sound of the era, yet more '84 / 85 oriented with a profuse keyboard / synth presence turning things much more AOR. Think early Bon Jovi or other indie band featured on the blog some time ago; Addiction. There's also comparisons to other Syracuse based band; Alecstar. Not strange, as guitarist Harry Mantor was part of them before.
Despite of being an indie recording, we have a solid production on display, and a proper mix.

ZOID: LP 1987 + EP 1988 + Demos inside

All songs are really good, starting with the rocker "I Can't Wait" driven by sharp guitars and featuring the interesting pipes of frontman Jimm Richer, a singer rich at the mid-range. "From Here To L.A" is more catchy and melodious, followed by the mid-tempo AOR of "Try Again". Suffice to say; all the material here is peppered with keyboard fills all over.
"I'm Not Foolin´" is perhaps the most commercial tune (and a favorite) sporting a great chorus with a single potential, the lovely "Cards In Your Hands" lends to melodic radio-rock, while another favorite of mine, "Makes Me Wonder" is pure '80s AOR with a breezy melody adorned by saxophone.
"It Just Ain't Right" is another solid melodic rocker, slow but with strong guitars, and the LP ends with the catchy, typically 1985 (Canadian sounding to my ears) "Woman Of Stone".

The following year, Zoid recorded a promo mini-LP to seduce recording companies, including two songs from the debut plus new cut "Stealin`", featured in two different versions. This mini-LP is impossible to find original.
A nice vinyl-rip (cleaned by me) is added as bonus, as well 2 demo tracks from the second Zoid album never released (there's plans by some members to put both albums on CD someday).

ZOID: LP 1987 + EP 1988 + Demos - back

"Zoid" LP + EP + the bonuses are not only a much sought after pieces by collectors, but also really good, well composed & recorded Melodic Hard Rock / AOR tunes for all fans of the genre to enjoy.
A collectors item. RARE.


"Zoid" LP 1987:
1. I Can't Wait
2. From Here To L.A.
3. Try Again
4. I'm Not Foolin'
5. The Cards Are In Your hands
6. Makes Me Wonder
7. It Just Ain't Right
8. Woman Of Stone
"Zoid" Promo EP 1988:
1. Stealin' (Short version)
2. From Here To L.A.
3. Stealin' (Long version)
4. Makes Me Wonder
Demos (unreleased):
1. Hear Me
2. Trouble In Paradise

Jimm Richer: Vocals
Lou Secreti: Keyboards, Backing Vocals
Harry Mantor: Guitars, Keyboards, Backing Vocals
Todd Troubetaris: Bass
Mike Secreti: Acoustic & Electronic Drums
Jon Celi: Guitars, Vocals
Tony Stone: Drums
Andy Camano: Bass




ZOID: LP 1987 + EP 1988 + Demos
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Tuesday, March 30, 2021

MAY RUN - Days Into Years (1991)

 

Do you like Canadian Melodic Rock AOR sound? Then better don't miss this little gem if you like Haywire, The Bryan Hughes Group, Worrall, Simon Chase,etc. "Days Into Years", which seems to be the only album of MAY RUN is a smooth AOR, pretty well produced indie. More 'song oriented' than lush or bombastic style from the genre, there's breezy melodies very well arranged and professionally executed. Call me nuts, but on some songs MAY RUN remind me John Waite solo works. 

"The Only One", "Anastasia", "Tonite" are good examples of good traditional Cancon classic stuff. Well worthy of a place in your collection, this a good and very hard to find album, fetching exorbitant eBay prices when rarely a copy appear. 


1 - May Run - The Only One 
2 - May Run - More Than This 
3 - May Run - Be My Girl 
4 - May Run - These Eyes 
5 - May Run - Lay Your Hands 
6 - May Run - The Promise 
7 - May Run - Up Where Dreams Begin 
8 - May Run - Smile 
9 - May Run - Save Me 
10 - May Run - Big Big World 
11 - May Run - Anastasia 
12 - May Run - Tonite 
13 - May Run - Separation Day 

Steve Chivilo: vocals, acoustic guitar 
Chris Hammel: guitars, background vocals 
Greg McLean: bass 
Glenn Nowoselski: drums


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Thursday, March 18, 2021

ADRIAN'S WALL - Caught In The Web (1987)


A mega rare CD only released in Australia in limited quantity. ADRIAN'S WALL was Adrian Campbell's child, a studio project with local professional musicians. Campbell, a session vocalist himself, has recorded and arranged backing vocals in countless albums in the land of Oz. 

Around 1976, was the lead singer and stable member of AVALANCHE, a hard rock band whose debut album had moderate success, opening live shows for major international bands. In the 80's, Adrian has recorded an album with the band DE ARROW (pre - ROXUS), sadly still unreleased, from which only 4 demo tracks are floating around, a great keyboard oriented melodic rock / AOR stuff. 

As said, ADRIAN'S WALL was his own project, not strictly AOR, mixing many genres, but encompassing all the styles we like. My favourite song here is "Finally Deciding", a good resume of the overall sound. Featuring the great BRETT GARSED [NELSON, SOLO] on guitars (before his international stardom in the USA), this CD is a delightful listen, something different from the usual on this site. 

  A recommended addition to your collection, good music and very, very rare, hard to find album. 

01 - Night People 
02 - Afraid To Be Afraid 
03 - Finally Deciding 
04 - Reach Out I'll Be There 
05 - This Waiting (Is Killing Me) 
06 - Soul Breaker 
07 - Time Stands Still 
08 - The Dancer 
09 - I Doubt It (Will Ever Come True) 

Adrian Campbell - vocals, backing vocals, keyboards 
Brett Garsed (Nelson) - guitars 
Michael Den Elzen - guitars 
Larry Groves - keyboards 
Brian Hamilton (Air Supply) - bass, backing vocals 
Joe Imbroll - bass 
Robert Dillon (Colin Hay Band) - drums, percussion Steve Donald - drums 


Thursday, February 18, 2021

JOHN VERITY - Truth Of The Matter [self-released remaster] (1985)

JOHN VERITY - Truth Of The Matter 


Born in Bradford, England, John Verity has been in the musical business for five decades, fronting his own band and as part of numerous groups, recording and producing. 

 At the beginning of the '70s John was contacted by Rod Argent who was looking for new lead vocalist for his band ARGENT following the departure of Russ Ballard. After 2 albums (produced by John) and intense touring, along with Bob Henrit and Jim Rodford from Argent, he formed PHOENIX. The band recorded three successful albums (again, produced by him) and toured Europe supporting major acts. In 1980, John and Bob joined CHARLIE, to record and produce their landing into the US market; 'Good Morning America'. The next years were spent in recording studios, producing, playing guitar, or doing backup vocals with various acts including Motorhead, Saxon, Ringo Starr, Russ Ballard, Colin Blunstone. 

With his own studio ready, the John Verity Band was reactivated, and with the former members of Argent and Charlie aboard, the result was 'Interrupted Journey', a guitar fueled rockin' album released in 1982, highly acclaimed in the UK. After extensive tours in Europe & Scandinavia, they went into studio for the new album; 'Truth Of The Matter', described by John as "a mix of 'Live in the studio' material & standard studio creations". 

Sounding more polished than debut, but still retaining the guitar driven AOR rock vibe, the good thing is the increased keyboard presence and mid-80's commercial songwriting style. 'Roll the dice' won't be out of place in a CHARLIE's or any LOVERBOY album of that era, while 'Lookin' for love' sounds like a song that FOREIGNER will be proud of. 'Keep a little love in your heart' has a WHITESNAKE-ish hard rock splendour, 'Honesty & emotion' again a LOVERBOY stamp (great keyboards & chorus), and 'Only in a dream' is an impressive mid-tempo AOR tune. 

With some stellar guests (Mike Rutherford of Genesis wrote three songs) and solid production, this is a well rounded power AOR album, a highly recommended listen. 
Rare CD edition remastered & released by Verity himself. 


1 - Roll the dice 
2 - Lookin' for love 
3 - Hold on to love 
4 - Keep a little love in your heart 
5 - Who d'ya think your foolin' 
6 - Honesty & emotion 
7 - Only in a dream 
8 - Ride the wind 
9 - Stompin' ground 
10 - No pretending 

Guitars, Vocals : John Verity 
Keyboards : Rod Argent, Andy Wells 
Keyboards, Bass : Steve Thompson (Tygers Of Pan Tang) 
Guitar, Backing Vocals : John Neil 
Bass : Terry Uttley, Mike Rutherford (Genesis) 
Drums : Bob Henrit, Steve Rodford, Paul Smith 
Backing Vocals : Alan Silson, Chris Norman (Smokie) 


Friday, January 08, 2021

LAUREN SMOKEN - Lauren Smoken (1988)


Of all the female voices that have dared to nip at Janis Joplin's coat tails, Lauren Smoken's is the most powerful.
Almost unheard of outside her native Florida, she did at least pop up to New York for a spell in the late eighties to record a stunner of a debut album.

It ignores genres and cares only about Lauren's gorgeous voice, raw and howling when needed, soulful and velvety on the ballads.
One word defines her performance: Passionate.
The musical backbone of this recording is her husband, George Mazzola.
George's rippin' hard rock and gut-wrenching blues style shines throughout the disc, bringing Hendrix, Page, Clapton, Gary Moore to the table.
Listen his licks and solos carefully, the man was great! (passed away few years ago, Rest In Peace G.).

Produced by Jack Douglas (better known for his work with AEROSMITH), the sound and mix is straight in your face Rock 'N Roll.
Very rare CD version (looks like a bootleg!) including one bonus track, at max quality for you listening pleasure.
Highly Recommended.

01 - Haven't I had enough
02 - Rock a bye baby
03 - Smile
04 - Gonna give love one more try
05 - I need the money
06 - The trouble with me is you (CD bonus)
07 - License to love
08 - Come to me
09 - Cry wolf
10 - Little boy dreams
11 - Never learn to say good bye
12 - Best of me

Personnel: Unlisted
Lauren Smoken - Vocals
George Mazzola - Guitars


LAUREN SMOKEN - HERE .

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

ONE AND THE SAME - Someday (2002)


This is a revamped post from years ago, per request. The quality of the music deserves it and fact that it isn't available anywhere into the blogosphere.
Get it while it's hot...

This is a beautiful collection of songs & music, different to anything you have listened by now. Quite unknown and self-released, "Someday" was discovered to me by my good friend Troynew, so thanks him.
Forget genres and don't miss this graceful album. 

Troy himself explains the whole thing in his own words :

I was impressed when I first heard the soundbytes and couldn't wait for my copy to arrive.
Having heard the genuine article in all its regal splendor, I'm well and truly bowled over by what is clearly one of the latest and greatest in a long line of superb christian melodic pop/rock releases.

This is not just the best heretofore unknown outfit I stumbled across while racking up the items for my most recent order, but arguably the finest CD I've ordered this year thus far (and I've purchased quite a few).
Frankly I haven't heard this kind of vocal grandstanding from a female duo since VENUS & MARS' acclaimed masterpiece 'New Moon Rising', on this occasion as well combined with an immaculate production job and 10 outstanding tracks that leave little to be desired for the discerning aficionado of divinely inspired piano/keyboard dominated melodies and prodigy level songwriting.

Since I have a penchant for AOR, it stands to reason that I would favor those tracks with a heavier rock edge, such as magnificent opener 'The Father will find you' with its STYX-like pomposity and the simply breathtaking semiballad 'Peace be still', which is very much in the same style as the aforementioned VENUS & MARS (a superior version of Canadian sister act HEART).

For the past couple of days I've been playing those two to death, which is not taking anything away from the other delightful cuts.
I've enjoyed every single song (and note, for that matter) on this awesome album.
No impartial listener could fail to recognize how extremely talented these ladies are, though I would hardly call them 'one and the same'.
On the contrary, their voices are unique in their own way (obviously), while complementing each other exceedingly well.

This disc is for those who value subtle and refined, yet with plenty of bravado, and should appeal to a sizable, diverse audience (Did I hear echoes of Sade in 'Love remains'?).
To state I am looking forward to hearing more from ONE AND THE SAME would be putting it mildly.
Need I say it? Get this album while the getting's good, or you may live to regret it!

Highly Recommended


1. The Father Will Find You
2. Someday
3. Love Remains
4. Have Mercy (On Me)
5. Peace Be Still
6. Eyes of Sorrow
7. These Are the Times
8. Because of You
9. Lord Gives Grace, The (Hannah's Song)
10. Captain of My Soul

Rachel MacKay: Lead & Backing Vocals, piano
Mitzi Shetzline: Lead & Backing Vocals, piano
Mark Pay: Guitars, Background Vocals
Randy Melson: Bass
Shawn Fichter: Drums & Percussion
Rolin Mains: Synths, keyboards

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Thursday, December 03, 2020

REQUEST & FILL CORNER 23

Request & Fill Corner PART 23

From now, all request & fills goes in this post Comments.
If you need an album or a single track, request it here, if you have it, be kind with other readers, upload the file and post the link here as well.
Access to this page will be placed at the right column ------>
(the "CLICK HERE" neon sign)
It will be opened in a new window.

Check this section regularly.
You'll find many albums uploaded by readers, not present on the main blog ...

Help each other people!


and don't forget to check out ARCHIVES:



ARCHIVES PART 19

ARCHIVES PART 20

ARCHIVES PART 21

ARCHIVES PART 22

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Wednesday, December 02, 2020

KC ROSE - ST (1992)


Requested in "Request & Fill Corner" section...

KC ROSE also known as Kansas City Rose was a Swiss melodic hard rock founded in the late eighties by experienced singer Mark B. Lay (ex- Killer). The man not only has sung in several groups, Lay has also produced many bands in his own country and North of Italy.
Under his baton KC Rose recorded and released privately their sole self titled album in 1992. This 6-track CD includes very well written and played Euro Melodic Hard Rock songs with pulsating guitars and pretty keyboard infused.

Sound and style recalls Swedes Mi.lli.on and KCR countryman Satrox, but they also show a more melodic side in the vein of Dalton, DaVinci and early TNT, with a touch of some American bands.
Production is as good as it gets for an indie release, correctly recorded and mixed. Judging the quality of the songs, musicianship and year, it's quite strange that they couldn't find a label to back up their work.
A rare piece for which rabid collectors have paid ridiculous prices.
(Note: this isn't the poor copy seen on some forums, this one sounds good)


1 - History Should Bring Us Higher
2 - Hunt 'N Madness
3 - We Don't Know What Will Follow
4 - Kansas City Rose
5 - Big Fat Kings
6 - Diana

Mark B. Lay: vocals
Winy Wohlwend: guitars
Meinrad Hertmaner: keyboards
Beat Gisler: bass
Tommy Pfiffner: drums


KC ROSE 1992 .