Album Reviews

Brian Barnhouse – Clarified Review


Released by: Independent

Release Date: Out Now!!!

Genre: AOR




Now here we have something very sensational, straight out of the American independent scene and living in the middle of theUSA, I am proudly presenting you BRIAN BARNHOUSE, a guitarist/vocalist making his solo debut with ‘Clarified’. His first band was called RAYZE back in 1990, which was pure Classic 80s US Hair Metal a la DOKKEN (check out a video on Brian’s site, which by the way is a damn catchy tune with superb vocalwork!) and what followed were more bands, including MOTHER TUNG, with whom he released 2 CDs. All the time he was in contact with the legendary BOBBY BARTH from AXE, but it took until 2014 before the two would record an album, which is now out! Besides Bobby on guitar and taking care of the production, also BOB HARRIS from AXE is present on background vocals and keyboards. ‘Clarified’ is the result of this cooperation and I must admit, this is a fabulous honest record that shows that good new AOR/Melodic Rock in it’s traditional format can still sound sensational. This album is definitely more interesting that the standard FRONTIERS RECORDS releases, because Brian has delivered an album that can easily fit between ROBERT TEPPER, CARL DIXON and PAUL LAINE in their 1980s heydays that is of course. I am a lot of times stunned when I hear the material of Brian, because this is sounding really good and beating easily most of the other releases in the genre. 10 songs are included, with a nice variety in tempo and style, including uptempo songs, midtempo material and (semi) ballads, which are all filled with catchy hooks, memorable choruses and flashy guitarwork. The production by Bobby is quite excellent and the absolute highlights here are the superb uptempo AOR rocker “Never return” (one of 2014’s finest AOR songs, sounding like a cross between ROBERT TEPPER’s “No easy way out” and PAUL LAINE’s “Doriana”), “Morning sun” (beautiful semi AOR ballad), “Tears fall down” (another great AOR rocker, with even a touch of ROXUS), “Firelady” (once again a fantastic uptempo AOR rocker) and the closing semi AOR-Rocker/Ballad “Rule the sky”. ‘Clarified’ is an album you absolutely do not want to miss! Concluded, what we have here is a true winner for every fan of classic AOR/Melodic Rock out there! Get it a.s.a.p.!



Written by Gabor

Ratings    Gabor    9/10

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