|TRW Rivers Of Paradise||Frontiers Records|
TRW is none other than melodic rock greats Michael Thompson (guitar), Mark Williamson (vocals and bass) and John Robinson (drums).|
This is one of those session-all-star melodic rock projects that you hear about and instantly piss your pants about, drooling at the very thought of what such legends could possible come up with and just how glorious the songs could be. But when you get it home after weeks of anticipation, you discover it is one of those albums where the principles have (musically speaking) done exactly what they wanted to do, but not so much what you wished they have done.
History is littered with such albums where the guys have simple indulged their own musical passion rather than what they were perhaps best known for.
Now, that might sound a little harsh, so let me clarify that there is absolutely nothing wrong with that after all, musicians writing and recording from the heart can only be a good thing. And this is a quality record. There is no doubting the energy or quality of the performances.
But the appeal may not be as widespread as it could have been.
In the end this is one of those bluesy, stripped back organic kind of records that is really good for what it is .but the number of people that it will appeal to is going to be limited.
The record grows on repeated listens and there really is some fine songs within. The uptempo melodic rock of Rivers Of Paradise is of course the billboard for the album as it has the most instant appeal.
But it is with the second full length track Hold On that the album's true nature is revealed. Earthy, blues based rock with a touch of soul is the name of the game.
Indiscretion and Gonna be Some Changes continue themed-tempo blues based approach. Solid songs, but no real urgency to them and certainly no anthemic choruses in sight.
The mid-album ballad Only A Letter is the second real gem of the record, turning towards a more appealing AOR sentiment.
Hard Time Love goes straight back into the stripped back classic rock sound and One Good Woman gets even bluesier with quite a swagger to it.
Love Comes Calling is again more AOR friendly and another highlight, and the album closes with one of the bluesier songs of the entire record Alimony Blues.
include("f-review.p3"); retrieve("trw-rop",0,1); ?>