Andre Anderson - Black on Black
Frontiers Records
Prog Rock
9 songs (45'56)
Release year: 2002
Frontiers Records
Reviewed by Ben

This is Andre's new solo release, and is it just me or does the cover art look similar to Judas Priest's Demolition?. You might recognize him from Royal Hunt after all, he is their main composer. I honestly dont know why he released this cd as a solo release. There's nothing new at all, no stylistic departures and the songs are all middle of the road and nothing stands out. Several tracks could have been excellent had Andre fleshed them out more and saved them for the next Royal Hunt cd. This really had potential with the enlistment of vocal legend Ian Parry but alas, in the end I have to say I was dissapointed.

The first thing that went through my mind when I popped ths disc is was "Wow this sounds like Royal Hunt." The same style is present here on Black on Black, classy keys done in a sweeping almost neoclassical style, interweaving with very technical guitar passages and vocalist Ian Parry sounds so much like John West that I thought John himself was singing on this cd. The guitar stylings remind me of Royal Hunt's last studio release The Mission. It has that same tone and feel to it which is another reason this disc just seems like a lesser quality Royal Hunt.

Opener Coming Home sets the mood for the whole album. When it starts you get excited thinking, "Hey this is pretty good I cant wait for the song to kick into full gear." but thats the problem, none of em do. Granted many songs like Tell Me Why, Arena, and Piece of My Heart can keep your attention for the whole song, when its all over you sit there and try and remember highlights and you cant. Some saving moments appear in the track Sail Away. With its fast, heavy intro and amazing singing by Ian Parry this track FINALLY made me start nodding my head and go "Yea this is pretty cool." If only the rest of the album was in the same vein as Sail Away. Production is excellent like always but the album as a whole just doesnt seem as fulfilling as say The Watchers or even Fear. It might seem like Im being overly harsh on this cd but I honestly cant even see why it was released. If Andre had taken the "killing" songs off here and worked on em some more and included them on the next Royal Hunt cd I would wholeheartedly reccomend picking it up, but unless youre a diehard, live for Andre and Royal Hunt type of fan this cd probably wont do much for you as it DIDNT for me.

Killing Songs :
Arena, Tell Me Why, Sail Away
Ben quoted 68 / 100
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