SCORE - 92%
Pride Of Lions delivers album number six and probably their strongest since 2007’s The Roaring Of Dreams.
Jim Peterik and the brilliant vocals of Toby Hitchcock make a perfect team, with Jim’s more recent songwriting featuring a more theatrical lean and Toby giving those songs instant flair, but also steering the choruses back into AOR territory.
The album sounds a million bucks – the regular production team, including deskman Larry Millas, at Jim’s home studio have this down to a fine art. All we need is the songs.
Jim Peterik isn’t short in inspiration – I’ve never seen any man write as many ideas down as constantly as Jim does. Lion Heart picks the best 12 and follows a similar path to that of previous Pride Of Lions albums.
Lion Heart is the powerful opening number; Heart Of The Warrior is the feel good 80s soundtrack tune; Carry Me Back the sentimental AOR hook and
Waiting For A Girl Like You Sleeping With A Memory is the moody 80s ballad.
Elsewhere Good Thing Gone, Give It Away and You’re Not A Prisoner mirror the best the band has offered while Now & Unfinished Heart bring the tears.
A terrific and highly recommended album.
I do note that Jim Peterik takes lead vocal on the first verse of every song, raising his vocal profile on this release above that of any before it. It does change the dynamic a little. His vocals are among the best I’ve heard from him, but Pride Of Lions has in my mind always been Jim’s songs and sound and Toby’s voice. Its not quite as cut and dry on this album. Minor point.