Vinny Records / Avalon Japan (MICP-10264)
Produced by: 91 Suite / Mark Mangold

Released: OUT NOW / Website
Relatives: Mark Free, Street Talk, Journey

  1. The Day She Left
  2. Down To You
  3. Time To Say Goodbye
  4. Lost In The Silence
  5. Hard Rain
  6. Chances
  7. Hurt And Pain
  8. All Is Gone
  9. Give Me The Night
  10. I Will Stand By You
  11. Chance Of A Lifetime
  12. Wherever I Am
  13. Dreaming

In a year that has seen plenty of good solid melodic rock releases, plenty of melodic metal releases, not to mention a range of progressive releases, there remains a gap for good, well played, well sung pure AOR.
91 Suite is an example of just that.
Great pure AOR! Hailing from Spain, these guys enlisted the help of keyboard wiz Mark Mangold to mix the album, which enhances the overall quality of the product.
But it's the songs and style that is more important here.
91 Suite play an instantly catchy brand of AOR - with an equal mix of lead guitar and keyboards, all supplemented by a versatile and strong lead vocalist Jesus Espin, who's tone I would best describe as in the higher range category, similar in part to that of a softer Mark Free or a more European hybrid of Steve Perry and Jaded Heart/Rain's Michael Bormann....sort of!
On that basis, I have to say that anyone that is partial to the more commercial, softer, more keyboard dominated parts of Journey, or band like Two Fires etc would be doing themselves a favour if they check this out.
Anyone that owns the Now & Then Records released Mark Free album Long Way From Love should also check this out - the very keyboard friendly AOR style is similar.
Being from Spain, the guys definitely sound European, close in style and delivery tot hat of fellow European AOR stars Street Talk.
The Day She Left contains several good hooks, without ever going over board, but on Down To You, all caution is thrown to the wind as the song contains a sweet melody and a huge chorus hook that will have fans of releases like Two Fires, Heartland's debut or Mark Free's AOR demos.
Time To Say Goodbye continues and before you know it the closing track is upon you.
BOTTOM LINE: This is a great album for those that love their AOR pure and keyboard drenched, complete with sweet vocals and pleasant harmonies. 91 Suite are one of the bright hopefuls and this one of the best debut albums for 2001.
The songs could tend to sound a little too the same if this style is not your normal taste. The first half of the album is definitely the stronger.
If it's hard edged guitars you are looking for - look elsewhere. But if big hooks, lots of keyboards and above all, nice easy listening AOR, then go no further, this is hot!
ESSENTIAL FOR: All fans of soft, feel good AOR, fans of good keyboard and vocal dominated AOR.

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