AOR - 2012 - The colors of LA
01 – Jenny At Midnight
02 – Benedict Canyon
03 – Kimberly
04 – Under Your Spell
05 – Brittany
06 – Halo Of Light
07 – Just One Kiss On Your Heart
08 – Dreams From Silver Lake
09 – You’re My Obsession
10 – Teach Me How To Love You Again
11 – Grace (Instrumental)
12 – Never Gonna Let Her Go (Instrumental)
“The Colors Of L.A.” is the new installment of French / USA based singer/ writer/ producer Frédéric Slama’s band AOR.
Any fan of the genre knows of this project that has released no less than 10 CDs (including compilation albums) up to this point.
Once again the list of guest musicians appearing alongside mister Slama is unbelievable: On vocals we have Philip Bardowell (ex-Unruly Child), Steve Newman (Newman), Jerry Hludzik (Dakota), Joey Summer (Karma), Rick Riso (Messenger) and even the amazing Joe Pasquale, who hasn’t officially recorded anything new in almost 20 years.
The guitar contributions are out of this world. Who can boast to have Steve Lukather, Michael Landau, Michael Thompson and Peter Friedstedt on one and the same album? And let's not forget the mighty Tommy Denander who provides the cherry on the cake.
And the list continues with the likes of the legendary David Foster & Randy Goodrum on keys, monster drummers Vinnie Colaiuta and Joey Heredia,...too many to mention actually.
“The Colors Of L.A.” is more AOR / Melodic Rock oriented than its predecessors that all featured several West Coast tunes. But who cares, this material is delicious.
Highlights include opener “Jenny At Midnight”, a terrific AOR track featuring the fantastic vocals of Joe Pasquale who demonstrates here that he's still in top form and the keyboard induced “Benedict Canyon” with its dreamy melody and the classy vocals of Jerry Hludzik. For all Dakota fans this is pure bliss.
Mister Hludzik by the way also does a great job on the lush “Dreams From Silver Lake”.
“Under Your Spell” is more Euro Melodic Rock inclined with a starring role for one Joey Summer while “Halo Of Light” takes us back to the golden’80s and sees Rick Riso laying down a very smooth performance..
Philip Bardowell on the other hand shines on “You’re My Obsession”, a cracking AOR tune that reminds me of the great mid-2000 project Ambition.
But there are also a couple of tunes that fail to make an impression.
Steve Newman for example is simply out of place on “Kimberly”. I love the man’s voice but it's not suited for this kind of stuff. He sounds forced here... the song itself is also pretty weak to be honest.
" Brittany” is another track where the songwriting is not completely solid.
The album ends with two extremely fine instrumentals where the guitar is the undisputed star.
The few weaker moments are fortunately outnumbered by tunes of the highest calibre and so the verdict of the final product is a most positive one..
“The Colors Of L.A.” is just another magical trip to the golden AOR years.
For any AOR / Melodic Rock fan this is a must have, for the simple reason that it includes the best musicians in the genre, delivering great performances.
Frederic Slama: Guitars, Keyboards
Tommy Denander: All Instruments
Philip Bardowell , Jerry Hludzik , Steve Newman , Joey Summer , Rick Riso , Joe Pasquale
Steve Lukather , Michael Landau , David Williams , Michael Thompson , Peter Friestedt
David Foster , Randy Goodrum , David Diggs , Morris Adrigens
Vinnie Colaiuta , Joey Heredia , Miri Miettinen
Brandon Fields , Tom Saviano
Christian Tolle , Bruno Levesque
Last Updated (Sunday, 20 May 2012 11:22)