Saturday, April 29, 2017

JOSHUA - Surrender [Japanese CD Edition]

JOSHUA - Surrender [Japanese CD Edition]
Requested in one comment

"Surrender" is the second album from JOSHUA, the band of talented American shredder Joshua Perahia. Regarded as one of the best Melodic Hard Rock records released by an American band during the '80s, "Surrender" should have sold millions if the recording company had been properly promoted the band.

"Surrender" was originally issued in 1985 on vinyl only, and although the US public barely noticed the release, the album did it well in Japan and Europe, where Kerrang Magazine ranked the LP #1 for weeks.
This vinyl version of "Surrender" was posted on the blog 7 years ago, and requested again. But I think it was most suitable to present now the CD version of the album.
By 1992, Perahia received an offer to re-record "Surrender" with a bigger production budget and the promise of an international edition / distribution.

Joshua re-worked the whole thing from the scratch: everything was re-recorded with the exception of Jeff Fenholt's vocals. There's new guitar solos, some different rhythm tracks, new drums, multi-layered choruses, etc.
The CD reissue also features the additional track "Show Me the Way" with Robyn Kyle Basauri (Red Sea) on vocals. Robyn's leads were also added to "Loveshock", originally performed by Ken Tamplin.

The songs on "Surrender" are superb. With a strong hard rock foundation, all are built on terrific melodies and catchy AOR choruses. Just take as example the soaring opener "Surrender Love" with its biting guitar riffs, stabbing keys and wonderful verses showcasing Fenholt's top vocals. The chorus is to die for with all the '80s charm over it.
"Your Love Is Gone" is a melodic hard rock gem, same with the new cut "Show Me the Way" (with a little 'American Whitesnake' in it) and the more mid-tempo oriented Yardbirds' cover of "Heart Full of Soul".
There's more hard rockin' numbers in between, like "Back To The Rock" or the kickin' "Loveshock", not ordinary compositions for sure plenty of substance and great musicianship.

While many still prefer the "Surrender" original recording (which included some Simmons electronic drums typical of the era) this re-recorded version is equally great. It's more professionally done and sounds vibrant and punchier.

JOSHUA - Surrender [Japanese CD Edition] back cover

The CD was reissued several times, always with a different artwork. This is the out of print Japanese edition from 1994 quite rare and hard to find.
"Surrender" is a superlative piece of US American Hard Rock that deserves a distinguished place in your collection.

01 - Surrender Love
02 - Heart Full Of Soul
03 - Your Love Is Gone
04 - Stay Alive
05 - Rockin' The World
06 - Back To The Rock
07 - Hold On
08 - Show Me The Way
09 - Loveshock
10 - Rockin' The World (reprise)

Joshua Perahia: Guitars, Bass, Backing Vocals
Jeff Fenholt, Robin Kyle: Lead & Backing Vocals
Patrick Bradley: Keyboards
Loren Robinson: Bass
Craig Ostbo, Joe Galletta, Joe Tafoya: Drums
Eric Tuttobene, Ken Price, Bryan Fleming: Backing Vocals

JOSHUA Surrender [Japanese Edition]

Thursday, April 06, 2017

10 P.M. - Life At... 10 P.M. [remastered] (1995)

10 P.M. - Life At... 10 P.M. [remastered] (1995)
Requested in "REQUEST & FILL CORNER" section...

"Life At... 10 P.M.", the one and only album from Norwegian act 10 P.M. is an obscure, indie release much sought after by collectors fetching sidereal prices at eBay.
10 P.M.'s style is Euro AOR but not flooded by fluffy keyboards / sweet choruses known from Scandinavian acts. Their music tends to be more elaborated and expansive, with three of the tracks here around the 6-minute mark. This also suppose a slightly progressive orientation, yet on the lighter side of the spectrum.

With that in mind, "Life At... 10 P.M." features really interesting compositions such as title track, midtempo 'The Last Note' (perhaps the best song here), 'Tears In The Night', and the short, acoustically based 'Tears In The Night'.
On the more commercial side, and adding a touch of melodic hard rock we have 'Easy Come', 'Bridges', 'Leaving The Body', or the heavier 'Time Can Tell'.
There's also listed as bonus track a full length version of the title track including additional guitar solos and piano arrangements.

While "Life At... 10 P.M." isn't a catchy, 'instant AOR' record, it's a quite interesting opus. The problem with this album is the disparate production, and at places, the mix, something understandable as it was recorded on a very scarce budget at hand on previously used analog tapes.
Not so long ago it was reissued with a 'remastered sound' where several flaws were corrected, like tape hiss, buried bass lines, etc.
This is the "Life At... 10 P.M. / Remastered" version, rare as hen's teeth.

01. The First Sunrise (intro)
02. Easy Come
03. Life At P.M. [radio edit]
04. Bridges
05. The Last Note
06. Leaving The Body
07. Time Can Tell
08. Future Dreams
09. Tears In The Night
10. One Track Jack
11. Tears In The Night
12. Life At 10 P.M. [full length – bonus track]

Henning Glommen: vocals
Patrik Olsen: guitar
Tommy K.: keyboards, piano, bass
Fin Nass: drums

10 P.M. - Life At... 10 P.M. [remastered] (1995)