Tuesday, 17 May 2011

MISS BEHAVIOUR - Last Woman Standing (CD)

German label Avenue Of Allies are really giving it their all to be a melodic rock force to be reckoned with. With several really interesting releases in their roster they have now taken Swedish AOR band Miss Behaviour under their wings. The band’s debut “Heart Of Midwinter” (2006) was a really good effort. “Last Woman Standing” has however elevated the band to a whole new level. Maybe it’s the fact that original members Erik Heikne (guitar) and Henrik Sproge (keyboards) have drafted Shineth members Sebastian Roos (vocals/bass) and Anders Berlin (drums). Roos is the perfect vocal choice for the band, plus he’s a really great bass player I must say (I was surprised to read he’s also a member of Beatles tribute band Liverpool!). If you’re into bands like Bad Habit, Alien, Shineth, Shiva, H.E.A.T etc, then this is definitely a band you need to check out. I shall admit that some choruses are a bit too poppy for me, where “Give Her A Sign” is borderlining the Eurovision Song Contest, but as a whole it really works well! It’s AOR, melodic, well played, easy accessible and without any forms of thorns, edges or obstacles. The songs just flow through your head without making any bigger fuss. Sounds boring. Well, it actually ain’t. I listen to many different categories of music and I listen in several different ways. I can listen to some records where I really need to focus, where I want to hear every nuance and detail, where I almost want to be an integral part of the music. Then there are albums like this one where I can just enjoy it without having to concentrate, it’s an album I can enjoy while driving, while working, and album that I find myself tapping the rhythm to, humming along. It’s the same as when I’m listening to albums by bands like Survivor, Journey or Swedish fellows Bad Habit, Shineth (maybe not so surprising), Street Talk, Last Autumn’s Dream etc. Speaking of Survivor, the track “Taking Hostage” has some serious Survivor vibes in the intro and chorus. There are a few songs that stick out a bit, such as the heavy “Perfect War”. The production, by former Pole Position drummer Daniel Gese, is well balanced, dynamic and rich. My only complaint would be I’m sort of allergic to drums that sound programmed/triggered where every beat and cymbal sound exactly the same. The track “Perfect War” features a guest solo from Masterplan guitarist Roland Grapow, not that Heikne needs to be relieved of any of his duties as he’s a great guitarist. Highly recommended for fans of classic AOR.

Janne Stark
Label: avenue Of Allies
Year: 2011
Link: http://www.missbehaviour.se/

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