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Houston - Relaunch II

Relaunch II
by YNGWIEVIKING at 31 July 2014, 7:20 PM

HOUSTON is a gifted AOR band from Sweden that is use a very strange marketing strategy, indeed their brand new album “Relaunch II’’ consists of 6 cover songs from John Farnham, John O’Banion, One Republic, Rick Springfield, Florida Georgia Line, Lady Gaga and only Four original new songs…Curious isn’t it?

HOUSTON has experienced some personnel changes, they have a new line-up and they claim that they want to show with “Relaunch II” that they are still rocking great, and by paying tribute to the music that inspired in the first place to form the brilliant band that HOUSTON is today, using the same timeless recipe with much more experimentations and the strong will to prove it in being confronted with different genres.

They already use the similar trick for the first “Relaunch” disc in 2011, and it was immensely successful, so why not?

The album is once again is superbly produced by Mastermind Rick B. Delin (exPRISONER) and the obvious winning asset is still clearly the Lead Vocalist Hank Erix who deliver another stunning solid performance, a perfect vocal interpretation, in this great dogmatic stylistic tradition that once dominated the worldwide airwaves.
The problem as far as i’m concern, is that cover songs like “Counting Stars”/ ”Do What You Want” or “Cruise” are out of place in such a record, but i suppose that’s why the skip button was created, on the flip side some amazing compositions like the opener “Justice For One” or  Springfield’s “Souls” are superb renditions and strong additions to the value of this disc!

Let’s not forget the fresh new cuts, a first range West Coast/AOR in the most pristine method, like honey for my scorched Metal ears and a real delight for any fan of this radio friendly style even if the improvments promised aren’t obvious at all, at least in their own tracks, the legendary principles and the integrity of the tagged genre are fully respected.

“Relaunch II“  will be released on September 8th but the brand new single "Our Love" featuring guests from RECKLESS LOVE / CRAZY LIXX / CASABLANCA & REACH is already available digitally since July 14th everywhere.

The softened portion of the Melodic Rock afficionados will enjoy it for sure…I know that it will divide the little AOR community, I’m pretty certain as i’m a little puzzled concerning my feeling about this “Relaunch part 2”…My final marking is a confirmation of this state.

3 Star Rating

1. Justice For One (Originally by John Farnham)
2. Love Is Blind (Originally by John O’Banion)
3. Counting Stars * (Originally by One Republic)
4. Souls (Originally by Rick Springfield)
5. Don't Look Back
6. Cruise (Originally by Florida Georgia Line)
7. Do What You Want ** (Originally by Lady Gaga)
8. Our Love
9. Downtown
10. Standing On The Moon
Hank Erix - Lead vocals
Ricky Delin - Keyboards/Backing vocals
Soufian Ma'Aoui - Bass
Calle Hammar - Guitars/Backing vocals
Victor Lundberg - Keyboards/Backing vocals/Duet Vocals on*
Oscar Lundström - Drums

Lizette Von Panajott – Duet Vocals on* *
Record Label: Livewire/Cargo Records


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