Label: Lions Pride Music 2016
Review by Kimmo Toivonen
Greek AORsters Wild Rose have returned to the frontline with original vocalist George Bitzios back behind the microphone. Their two previous albums featured seasoned British vocalist David A. Saylor on vocals who did a good job, but so does the ”original guy”. His voice is somewhere between Steve Overland and Alan Marsh (Shogun, Tokyo Blade) and suits these songs perfectly.
Looking at the song titles, the band continue on the same path as on their previous album: one could be forgiven for thinking that this is an all-covers affair. I mean, ”Desperate Heart”, ”Time After Time”, ”Love Games”, ”Hot Wired”… none of the songs are covers though, they’re all Wild Rose originals. But maybe a little effort into the lyrics or at least naming the songs could have been beneficial for the band?
When it comes to the music, the band stays very true to the classic AOR sounds of the eighties. They have certainly studied the songbooks of Survivor, Foreigner, FM, Journey and countless others very thoroughly and have created 10 perfectly crafted, if maybe a bit too familiar sounding AOR songs.
These songs are easy to like, but somehow they are just too safe for me to really love them. Compared to ”Hit’n Run” (their previous album), the hooks aren’t quite as sharp and the overall vibe of the album is more ”mid-tempo”. My favourite song is definitely ”Love Games”, which is one of the up-tempo tracks here and does have a very strong chorus. ”Love Can Change You” and ”Don’t Let Me Down” aren’t far behind, but even they could have used an extra dose of intensity.
If traditional AOR is your thing, ”4” is worth checking out.