Album Reviews

Aor – The Colors of L.A. Review

Released by: AOR Blvd Records

Release Date: Out Now!!!

Genre: AOR

Links: http://www.slama101.fr/

 

Line Up:

Frederic Slama (guitars, keyboards)

Tommy Denander (all instruments)

Philip Bardowell (vocals)

Jerry Hludzik (vocals)

Steve Newman (vocals)

Joey Summer (vocals)

Rick Riso (vocals)

Joe Pasquale (vocals)

Christian Tolle (all instruments)

Bruno Levesque (all instruments)

Steve Lukather (guitar)

Michael Landau (guitar)

David Williams (guitar)

Michael Thompson (guitar)

Peter Friestedt (guitar)

David Foster (keyboards)

Randy Goodrum (keyboards)

David Diggs (keyboards)

Morris Adrigens (keyboards)

Brandon Fields (saxophone)

Tom Saviano (saxophone)

Hussain Jiffry (bass)

Vinnie Colaiuta (drums)

Joey Heredia (drums)

Miri Miettinen (drums)

 

Tracklist:

1. Jenny At Midnight

2. Benedict Canyon

3. Kimberly

4. Under Your Spell

5. Brittany

6. Halo Of Light

7. Just One Kiss On Your Heart

8. Dreams From Silver Lake

9. You’re My Obsession

10. Teach Me How To Love You Again

11. Grace (bonus Track)

12. Never Gonna Let Her Go (bonus Track)

 

You know certain projects just work in their respective genres, and the AOR laden project of french man Frederic Slama falls into this category. Slama having lived in LA for 10 years himself associated himself with some big time names when it came to session guitarists and amazing talent which later down the line have contributed greatly into his AOR projects. For some of the genre the AOR release “LA Reflection” was the cream of the crop when it was released in 2002 landing on many journalists top lists of West Coast records. It has seemed to be a who’s who name list for each consequent release for Slama and AOR as he has managed to keep on collaborating with some immense talent in the genre and consistent players/producers the likes of Tommy Denander for instance.

Forward back to 2012 and here we go once more with the 10th official studio album featuring more talent such as (Philip Bardowell, Jerry Hludzik (Dakota), Joe Pasquale, Steve Newman, Joey Summer, Bill Champlin (Chicago), Christian Tolle, Steve Lukather, Michael Landau, David Foster, Randy Goodrum, Michael Thompson, Rick Riso, David Diggs, Bruno Levesque (Silence) and many more.) Not only is the talent involved great, but the music has always been intricately showcasing a mix of West Coast and Melodic Rock staples throughout the years proving to be a nice balance of melodic bliss.

The trademark West Coast sound is clearly visible with it’s production which is superb once more and being handled by Denander. Pure AOR staples like “Benedict Canyon” are great examples of the style that Slama portraits best, nice job of vocals by Jerry Hludzik. The next track “Kimberly” features the great Steve Newman on vocals and he brings a slightly harder edge to this song, as it leans more towards the Melodic Rock side of things, consequently this tune features a nice harder groove and is a great tune. The solidity of the quality of the songs keep rolling forward with nice numbers like “Just One Kiss on Your Heart” featuring Philip Bardowell on vocals alongside some exhilarating guitar hooks that invigorate the track.

This is an AOR/Melodic Rock purists dream as the talent here provides a stable backbone for each song, Slama does well as usual assembling the core of the talented guest musicians throughout the album, and he does a solid job on guitars and keyboards. This has always been a music project for pure lovers of the AOR genre and for the quality of the songwriting and the guest always involved, it deserves some well refined feedback. The Colors of L.A. delivers yet again with a crisp clean production to add to add on top of it’s top tier music.

 

Written by Denys

Ratings    Denys    8/10

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