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On disc: Voices Of Rock



MMVII - Claudia Ehrhardt - 9 stars
MMVII - Philip Thelen - 9 stars
High & Mighty - Claudia Ehrhardt - 9 stars


www.myspace.com/voicesofrock







High & Mighty

High & Mighty
(Metal Heaven - 2009)


The Voice Of Rock MMVII was quite successful and so Chris Lausmann and Michael Voss teamed up again for a follow up. And again they got some of the best singers in rock to sing on High & Mighty.
The opener is called Into The Light and features Tony Martin. The former Black Sabbath singer added his voice to a melodic rocker with heavy riffs and a catchy refrain. Great opener! The name Bert Heerink might not ring a bell, but he was the voice of Vandenberg - and has a solo album on the way (Better Yet... will be in stores Sept. 25th). Shame On You is an up-tempo melodic rocker with an 80's keyboard intro - and during the bridge and refrain the keyboard steps up front again. But you won't miss heavy riffs! A song which in the late 80's / early 90's would have make it into heavy rotation! Next in line one of my all-time favorite singers - Joe Lynn Turner! Tonight is a balladesque rocker which really revives the 80's. It seems that Rock Me is a heavy rocker... At least it starts that way, but then a break and a passage with Paul Shortino's emotional vocals and acoustic guitar. Back to the rock theme! A trip on a roller coaster - from heavy rock to balladesque acoustic passages, you get it all! They slow down for Remember Me which features Rob Rock. Not really a ballad, but highly melodic and again great guitar play! After Lay You Down To Rest with Mitch Malloy it's time for Tony Mills (ex-TNT, ex-Shy) to take over for In The Heart Of The Young. It's not Tony's vocals, but somehow this one doesn't get me... Former Accept singer David Reece is adding his voice to the heavy, powerful rocker Dirty Games. A solo album of Reece is in the stores now, so if you like his voice, check it out! And it gets even heavier with Down The Drain which is sung by Paul Sabu. You might not know the name Torben Schmidt, but you might remember Skagarack. Keyboard and guitar leads you into Only 4 Ever, a melodic rocker. Not an ear catcher, but the guitar melody is very catchy and after a few spins this one will hook you up!
The limited first edition has as a bonus track Maniac sung by Michael Voss, unfortunately it's not part of the promo... So, if you love melodic metal and hard rock, if you are a fan of one of the singer, then get a copy now!


9 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt
 

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MMVII

MMVII
(AOR Heaven - 2007)


With Voices Of Rock you get a project with songs sung by the best hard rock / metal singers of these days. The project was started by Michael Voss (Mad Max, Casanova, Demon Drive, Silver) and Chris Lausmann (Bonfire) who are both known as producers. All songs been written by the dynamic duo who also produced the album as well as played on some tracks. Beside the duo Tommy Denander (Radioactive) and Angel Schleifer (Charade, ex-Pretty Maids, ex-Sinner, ex-Bonfire) on guitars and on drums Bertram Engel (Peter Maffay band, Udo Lindenberg band).
The opening track is called Voodoo Woman and is sung by House Of Lords master James Christian. A powerful melodic metal tune with a bombastic edge. Sharp riffs kick off Wild Thing with Jean Beauvoir. The melody soon hooks you up. The former Plasmatics bassist worked with Steve Van Zandt and wrote music for artists like Tina Turner, Eurythmics and Bruce Springsteen as well as for several blockbuster movies. With Crown Of Thorns he got some attention and through the years he did some guest performances - e.g. Doro's Sister Darkness (off Fight; co-written by him and he added some guitar parts) - and is now part of Voices Of Rock. The song is a cool rocker and I hope that we soon here more from Mr. Beauvoir! With Nightingale it slows down a bit. This powerful, balladesque tune is sung by Terry Brock (Slamer, ex-Kansas, ex-Strangeways, ex-The Sign) who adds some emotional vocals. What I miss is a catchy hook... The chorus is quite typical 80's melodic metal with a mighty backing vocals. I was very curious to hear Over And Over with Dan Reed adding the vocal parts, coz I really love the stuff he did with Dan Reed Network - long ago. His voice fits well to this mid-tempo rocker, but I miss a bit what the Dan Reed Network sound... I though he would be able to make his mark on this one. Johnny Gioeli made his first step into the spotlight with Hardline in the early 90's. Now he's more known for his work with German guitarist Axel Rudi Pell. Gioeli has a unique voice and so the song Phoenix Rising sounds like one of his own. An ear catcher! A killer track and the first real highlight on MMVII! Irresistible is starting off slowly and with an unusual drum pattern... A heavy rocker with some keyboard line which adds a symphonic touch to this one. The delicate vocals of Harry Hess (Harem Scarem) make this song irresistible. Gran Edman (Street Talk, ex-Malmsteen) delivers the vocal parts for China In Your Hands which has a poppy touch.... Easy to sing along. Singer Robin Beck everybody knows for her song First Time which got attention through a Coca-Cola commercial. Robin Beck is the only woman on this project and she sings Underloved which is a nice rock tune with some heavy riffing. Melodic metal with a bit bombast you get with Slip Away which is sung by Steve Overland (Shadowman, FM, The Ladder). This one would be a hit in the late 80's / early 90's! A touching rock ballad! Last, but not least Love Is Blind with Gary Barden (Silver, ex-Praying Mantis, ex-Statetrooper) who got first attention with MSG and is now pursuing a solo career. Heavy riffs opening up to a heavy melodic metal rocker. The vocals are catchy and emotional. Cool tune!
A great project which should be continued, even if there are only 2-3 real highlights, but all songs are on a very high level and so I can recommend this album to all hard rock / melodic metal fans! This is a must-buy!


9 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt
 

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MMVII

MMVII
(AOR Heaven - 2007)


Voices Of Rock is a kind of all star band which shows their love for melodic hard rock on this album. Producers Chris Lausmann (Jaded Heart, Bonfire) and Michael Voss (Mad Max, ex-Demon Drive, ex-Casanova) developed the concept which should be a lot fun for any rocker - and for a long time. The dynamic duo not just made the concept and produced the album, they also wrote the music and did the arrangements. And they could hire a lot of well-known musicians to bring the music to life. To name a few of them, on guitar you hear Angel Schleifer (ex-Bonfire) and Tommy Denander as well as Bertram Engel (Wolfgang Petry, Udo Lindenberg) on drums.
The opening tune Voodoo Woman reminds me of an old song from Wild Axes... A great one with groove and power. Same can be said of the following Wild Thing which is sung by Jean Beauvoir. Due to the fact that every song is done by another singer, every song has its own identity. They can all leave a mark on the songs and so they create a very unique hard rock album. With Nightingale sung by Terry Brock they calm down a bit. Every song has it's own feel and so they are all masterpieces on their own. I recommend this album to everybody who thought that the magic of the old days of hard rock is gone! Voices Of Rock is a straight hard rock album, get your copy!


9 stars

Philip Thelen
(translation: Claudia Ehrhardt)
 

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           2008-2010 by Claudia Ehrhardt • E-Mail: contact@ice-vajal.com


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