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Revolution Saints - Revolution Saints Award winner

Revolution Saints
Revolution Saints
by YngwieViking at 07 March 2015, 11:33 PM

If some of your favorite musicians are united under a brand new supergroup banner in order to bring to the world another masterpiece of Melodic Hard Rock, and if the band name is REVOLUTION SAINTS formed by the American trio of Deen Castronovo, Jack Blades and Doug Aldritch, if the first self titled album is finally available globally for a couple of days, would you take all this with calm and serenity or maybe some apprehensions could be considered as the whole operation seems a little risky ?

First thing, leaving all doubts behind, the REVOLUTION SAINTS' music is among the best of the best in the AOR genre, each and every typical elements is assembled with precision to fulfill the promise of such an heavenly line up, each song is played with passion, heart and soul with full intensity and great talent by a bunch of legendary players!

On paper, the whole casting looks amazing and the early teasing engagement is totally completed by the exceptional delivery carved on record, the JOURNEY fans should be in Melodic Heaven with such a record (“You're Not Alone”, the energetic ”Dream On” or the magnificent “Don’t Walk Away”), easily rated higher and much better than any contemporary disc by Schon and Cain… A future classic!

Each musician involved here detains an amazing pedigree in Melodic Hard Rock, they are all more than experts yet their experience and artistic talent is world widely renowned, of course the influential JOURNEY shadows is taking the lion’s share in the majority of the compositions, a fact even amplified by the Steve Perry vocal similarities of the unbelievably charismatic Deen Castronovo and the addition to the recording team of Arnel Pineda and Neal Schon himself, playing a soloing cameo on the superb “Way To The Sun”.

After starting his career behind the drum kit with the fierce US Metal powerhouse band WILD DOGS (the essential 1988’s “Reign Of Terror” is the crucial archetype of the American Power Metal sound of the late 80’s), and playing in countless demanding albums as a extraordinary session man for Mike Varney's SHRAPNEL Records mighty catalog, before achieved some big gigs as HARDLINE/BAD ENGLISH/Paul Rodgers/OZZY/Steve Vai and finally his ultimate goal taking the JOURNEY job as drum basher but also revealing his fantastic vocal talent, Mr Deen Castronovo is my favorite drummer ever!

Jack Blades is truly a legend in his own right, leading NIGHTRANGER for almost 35 years, but also the all stars group DAMN YANKEES or the great duet SHAW/BLADES, here he’s acting as songwriter/bassist and second vocalist…Great work on “Turn Back Time”!

The youngest is Doug Aldritch, a fine six string player, respected with his own successful acts like LION/BAD MOON RISING/BURNING RAIN but more recently some highly regarded in the lead guitarist/main composer role with DIO and WHITESNAKE

My prime enthusiasm was honored and all my expectations were fulfilled brilliantly in a flurry of harmonies…This All Star project is the brain child of Serafino Perugino (Frontiers Records President) and once again a triumphal bet, one of the many successful visions that the man had shared with us like W.E.T./ALLEN-LANDE or LRS or STARBREAKER, the addition of a panel of regular songwriter could have been a danger but finally this diversity driven in the same stylistic focus is rewarding !

The guys' musical performance and Alessandro Del Vecchio’s production efforts is the icing on the cake, but the real attraction of this first album is the strong songwriting method, not a single trace of a dull song or of a filler, instead the melodic climax are quite regular and the peaks are numerous, here is some obvious highlights, the emblematic archetypes of this triumphant track list :

“Here Forever” is a sublime power ballad, probably one of the most interesting track here, the vocals are in the timeless tradition of Steve Perry and the soulfull performance of Deen Castronovo is on par with the density of the music and the emotional content… HAREM SCAREM meets BAD ENGLISH concluded by elegant vocal ad lib and powerful licks courtesy of Doug Aldritch.

The ECLIPSE’s coversong “How To Mend A Broken Heart” is clearly a wise move, this inspired and updated rendition is a mutual double winning shot for both ECLIPSE and REVOLUTION SAINTS guys, keeping the dynamic character of the original with the ultra classy stamp of Castronovo & Co.

Composed by Magnus Karlsson (LAST TRIBE/PRIMAL FEAR/STARBREAKER/ex MIDNIGHT SUN) with lyrical support by Del Vecchio (HARDLINE/SILENT FORCE/AXE/LRS), “Better World” is another upbeat melodic jewel an authentic blend of the American and Scandinavian style

Ultra gifted Martensson has teamed up with Christian Wolff (PHENOMENA/OVERLAND) and Fredrik Bergh (STREET TALK/BLOODBOUND) for ”Strangers To This Life”; this is clearly one of the highlights with Deen in great shape for a full throttle rockin' piece very similar to  SURVIVOR meets HOUSE OF LORDS.

“In The Name Of The Father” is the perfect closing number of this stunning album, the piano/voice interaction is really special, emotionally sensitive and very passionate, the second part is also spectacular with the orchestral epic arrangements.

Each song could be designed as the best track as the quality flow is amazingly expressed by every second played, even the bonus tracks are essentials!

After many listening rounds, it seems that the late part is superior to the first songs, the external writers as Erik Martensson/Magnus Karlsson/Christian Wolff (RIP)/Fredrik Bergh/Magnus Henriksson or Johan Becker from Sweden are brilliant but this statement, does not means that it diminishes Alessandro Del Vecchio's superb creative input.

After the general consensus, I'm waiting for the regular skeptical haters of Frontiers/Marteensson/Karlsson/Del Vecchio and their justification of their sudden appreciation after so many years of systematic bashing… Guys you know that only idiots never change their mind.

So far and even if it’s too early to be perfectly sure, this is the album of 2015!

5 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Back On My Trail
2. Turn Back Time
3. You're Not Alone (Feat. Arnel Pineda)
4. Locked Out Of Paradise
5.Way To The Sun (Feat. Neal Schon)
6.Dream On
7.Don't Walk Away
8.Here Forever; Strangers To This Life
9.Better World; How To Mend A Broken Heart
10.In The Name Of The Father (Fernando's Song)
11.You Are Not Alone (Arnel Pineda version)
12.Way To The Sun (Doug Aldrich version)
13.You Are Not Alone (Deen Castronovo Version).
Lineup:
Deen Castronovo – Lead Vocals / Drums
Jack Blades – Bass / Lead Vocals
Doug Aldrich – Guitars
Alessandro Del Vecchio – Keyboards / Backing Vocals
Record Label: Frontiers Records
     


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Edited 02 August 2021
 

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