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Final Frontier - Freelight (CD)

Final Frontier
Freelight
by Grigoris Chronis at 17 November 2006, 4:34 PM

Croatian born Mladen Haze was the sole reason I picked up this CD for a review. I know the band had already released three albums in prior, but not a slight change did I have to obtain a copy. Mladen is related to two of the mostly respected AOR/Melodic Rock/Hard Rock acts of Canada: the legendary Triumph and the underestimated - and quite unlucky, era wise - Von Groove. Freelight did 'trespass' my CD player with much of confidence and I'm rather happy the audition(s) do glorify this review.
The Canadian act started its discography in 2002 via Z Records. The First Wave brought the sophomore The Second Wave (2004, Avalon Marquee) and - subsequently - the band inked deal with the Frontiers label for the release of High Tension Wire (2005). Singer Rob Moratti and guitarist Mladen seem - as I read in the band's bio - to have known each other for many years. With Mladen's credits leading to Triumph, Von Groove and 24K and Rob possessing a solo career, Final Frontier proved to be somewhat of a 'shelter' for their collaboration. And - reminding, not aware of the band's previous albums' quality - Freelight confirms a notable CD in the AOR/Melodic Rock genre, an effort that will urely be applauded with relief by followers of this music style.
The voice of Moratti lies in the middle of Steve Perry (Journey), Jon Anderson (Yes), Gil Moore (Triumph), Tommy Shaw (Styx) and Tony Mills (Shy). You get it? High-pitched vocals full of passion, ethereal yet imminent. The duties of the rest of the clan - Lawrence Falconer of Static X included - surely is in good shape, still the lack of a 'fat' production fails in giving justice. The songs themselves are one foot in the 80s AOR days and one foot in the post-1999 Melodic Rock renaissance. Hence, the styles of Journey, Survivor, Von Groove, Styx, Foreigner, Tour De Force and The Storm co-relate to the present 'wave' of countless bands now on the prowl for reviving the glory. But, the 'classic' is always better… Shit, excellent musaic released in a decadent era.
Featuring slow-tempo ballads, mid-tempo 'travelling' tunes and fast-tempo 'rolling' cuts, Freelight sees a set of twelve first-class 'melodic' AOR songs that will leave no relative fan uninterested. I only wish the production would be a little more stout, but then - maybe - the album  would sound 'metallized' enough…
P.S.: Nothing Is Easy, Someone's Watching You and Foolish Pride kick serious all-time ass…

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
Freelight
Dynamo
Foolish Pride
Only The Lonely
I Hope You Don't Mind
Someone's Watching You
All The Way
Nothing Is Easy
Lion's Den
The Witches Mask
Half Way Home (Bonus Track)
Delia (Bonus Track)
Lineup:
Rob Moratti - Lead & Background Vocals
Mladen - Lead & Rhythm Guitars, Bass Guitar, Keyboards
Lawrence Falconer - Lead Guitars
Kevin Howley - Drums
Record Label: Escape Music
     


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