|Final Frontier High Tension Wire||Frontiers Records|
High Tension Wire is now released outside Japan through Frontiers Records. There is one track difference - Half Way Home is
a bonus track for Japan, which is replaced by a bonus track for Europe - Let Me Be The One.|
Let Me Be The One is a feel good piano ballad that gathers momentum as the song goes. Just as catchy as the rest of the band's material and a solid addition to the album.
The original review of the Japanese release does not need changing and reads as follows:
For the uneducated, Final Frontier features vocalist and frontman Rob Moratti and Von Groove's Mladen, who contributes guitar, bass and keyboard parts.
Sonic X's Lawrence Falcomer adds valuable texture with his lead guitar work.
This is the band's third album and best yet. The guys have improved with each release and High Tension Wire features not only their best selection of songs to date, but also an improved production quality, in particular adding a little bottom end to the sound.
Final Frontier play nothing but pure AOR – the sort of fluffy, feel good music Journey are loved for and the type Styx and Foreigner peddled to the masses year after year. But the guys don't merely serve up the best of what we might already have.
The smooth, high pitch vocals of Moratti, coupled with some extremely catchy hooks and layers and layers of vocal harmonies are Final Frontier's trademark and High Tension Wire delivers 11 original tracks that stand on their own, yet draw comparisons with the favourites from the genre.
Track By Track:
High Tension Wire opens with a tougher mood than seen on the first two albums. The more direct guitar sound and the beefier bottom end provide the bass for a rocking song that turns to bliss with a high pitch chorus hook.
Two Different Worlds is classic AOR, with a clean mix of electric and acoustic guitars and subtle keyboards, with Moratti's Steve Perry inspired vocals gliding over the top. The verse is pure Perry, while the hook filled chorus is pure 80's glory.
Angel Of The Lake, with it's distinct 70's vibe, builds beautifully through the verse, to a chorus inspired by Dennis DeYoung Styx.
Beauty And The Beast is one of those songs that is just instant, thanks to a hook that stands out like dogs balls. The song itself has a mellow vibe, but the chorus is pure anthem joy and pays homage to classic Journey.
Hearts On Fire is a little tougher and one of the tracks that makes a better impact on the second and third listens. More Steve Perry mannerisms can be heard, which suits the song.
Hollywood Drama is a keyboard friendly tune in a style that Final Frontier have done a few times before, but it remains just as welcomed and enjoyed here.
The moody rock ballad Sunset At Dawn starts as an acoustic driven tune with a more in your face lead vocal and builds in tempo, with some ear pleasing soloing towards the end of the song. Also present is an impressive orchestral accompaniment which adds impressive depth.
Something More To This is everything Final Frontier are loved for – big bombastic vocals, smooth guitars and a memorable chorus layered in vocals.
Who's Gonna Love You Now is a tune with a real swagger and reminds me of 70's Journey and in particular the vibe of their classic Lights. Vocally speaking, Rob does his best Perry, not to mention his best full stop.
Listen To Your Heart is a pure 80's, mid-tempo AOR number with a great hook and memorable chorus. A true feel good pop rocker that would have found a place on a movie soundtrack had it been 1988.
This won't win over anyone that has moved on from the early AOR sound, but for those of us that live with one foot planted in the past – this is an album for you!
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