Feature: Melodic Rock & AOR round up


VEGA-TourdatesStuff by Woody

Woody gives us his insight into all the great and the good from the world of Melodic Rock.


My favourite band VEGA are back in action this July! Following the success of their support slot with FM in March, the guys return with a trio of headline shows this July including a show at Wolverhampton Slade Rooms on the 4th July. They recently released a new single – ‘What The Hell’ on the 27th May, which is well worth picking up as the B side is ‘Skin Deep’ which is an awesome song which should have been on the new album. You can check out their video for their second single ‘What The Hell’ below! Tickets for the Wolverhampton show can be purchased directly from the venue via this link! See ya’s all there!




Brummie melodic rockers Daylight Robbery have revealed that their new keyboard player is David Billingham. He joins the band after the recent departure of Duncan Cook.


Black Country melodic hard rock band Soley Mourning will be joining Shyne as support for Nazareth’s show at The Robin on November 24th.


Swedish melodic rockers Grand Design have just unveiled their latest video single for ‘Baby It’s You’ it features Susi Päivärinta on guest vocals, check it out below.


Impera, who caused a stir last year with their album Legacy Of Life which was released on the Escape Music record label, are back in the studio. The new album Pieces of Eden is pencilled in for a September release and is set to be mixed by Lions Share guitarist Lars Chriss. The band includes popular AOR songwriter Tommy Denander and the vocals of Matti Alfonzetti (Jagged Edge/Red White & Blues).


Swedish Glamsters Bai Bang have just released a video for ‘Everybody,  Everywhere’ – check it out below. The track is taken from their recently released album All Around The World which is out now via the AOR Heaven record label.


House of Lords front man James Christian has a new solo album out on July 5th entitled Lay It All On Me. Christian is also hard at work on a new House Of Lords album.


Black Country guitarist Simon Lees has been announced as the support for Magnum’s warm up show at The Robin on 25th July. Simon will be bringing his popular one-man-rock-show to warm up the Magnum crowd and will feature songs from his solo back catalogue.


UK melodic rockers Lost Weekend will release their sixth album Evermore on the 21st July via the AOR Heaven record label. The album was again produced by popular Swede Martin Kronlund. The few snippets I’ve heard has really piqued my interest as they echo the band’s earlier albums, especially Presence of Mind which is my favourite Lost Weekend album. Check out the very first Lost Weekend video below for ‘Reach For The Sky’.

King Kobra will be releasing their new album II via Frontiers Records in July. The album title is a little confusing as of course this is not the second KK album, but apparently it’s because it’s the second album since their reformation and also the second generation line-up of the band – as most will know the band was originally fronted by Mark Free and are now fronted by Paul Shortino (Rough Cutt / Quiet Riot).


The Rage Of Angels gig coming up at Lucy’s Bar in Hednesford on 12th September will now include support from cult UK AOR’sters Moritz. They join Daylight Robbery after Journey 2 Toto had to pull out due to unforeseen circumstances. This show has just gotten tastier especially for hardcore AOR fans and it will be my first opportunity to see this well supported UK act in action!


Robin Beck’s latest album Underneath will be released in the UK on the 12th August. You can hear snippets of all the songs featured on new album over at her website http://www.robinbeckrocks.com

It’s also available for pre-order from Robin’s site right now – with the first 200 orders being entered into a special lottery which offers a chance to win lots of goodies – and of course you will receive the album in advance of the street date!


Nigel Bailey has just announced he is part of a new British Melodic Rock band called Three Lions. It features guitarist Vinny Burns (Dare/Ten) and drummer Greg Morgan (Ten) and they will be making their live debut in July supporting Snakecharmer in Manchester.


Pink Cream 69 have just released a new video for the song ‘Special’ which is taken from their new album Ceremonial. Keep an eye out for some famous face cameo’s and check it out below.


Another live Whitesnake album is due out in July; this one is called Made In Britain – The World Record and will be released on the Frontiers Records label.


The Quireboys will release their seventh album Beautiful Curse in June via the Off Yer Rocka record label. It will be preceded by a digital single out now called ‘Too Much Of A Good Thing’.


Canadian guitarist Pat Travers will be back with a new album Can Do in July. The press release promises a return to the 70’s hard rock sound of Travers early albums – although with The Pat Travers band playing all the usual blues live venues, I suspect the new album will definitely be very bluesy! Pat Travers will be playing The Robin in Bilston on 3rd October.

FM have just announced a new show at The River Rooms in Stourbridge on 28th July. It seems the FM guys are making a weekend of it as this one off Midlands summer show from them is the day after their appearance at the Steelhouse Festival in South Wales. No shows in the Black Country in over 16 years and then we get two in one year! We are getting spoiled!


I’ve just heard that Tony Mills the original Shy front man will be at the Shy – tribute to Steve Harris show at The Asylum on 19th July. When this show had to be re-scheduled it was announced that Tony wouldn’t be able to make it, due to scheduling conflicts – remember Tony now lives in Norway and enjoys a very active music schedule there with TNT. So it’s great to hear he is now able to make it over for this show and sing some SHY classics!


The female fronted AOR of The Val will soon be hitting the road in the UK but surprisingly not a single date in the whole of the Midlands! These guys have a lot of buzz surrounding them and have been featured prominently in Classic Rock AOR magazine. Not heard a single note by them myself, but given the buzz I think I’m going to have to rectify that!


Former Bad Company front man Robert Hart is to have two of his solo albums reissued by Escape Music. The current Manfred Mann’s Earth Band vocalist will see Cries & Whispers and Robert Hart released as a double CD on June 21st. This will be an essential purchase for me and it’s good to hear Robert is working with Jim Kirkpatrick of FM in a new band called Diesel.


Record label, Avenue of Allies will release the second album from the oddly named West Coast rockers State Cows entitled The Second One on May 24th.

In further Avenue of Allies news they have set up a new subdivision label called New Venture Music. New Venture will deal with the distribution of albums when a new signing has already delivered the finished product, AOA will concentrate on projects and bands that the label have more input on.

The first two releases on the New Venture label are Spanish AOR-sters Indicco Karmalion and Italian hard rockers Markonee – Club Of Broken Hearts. Both albums will be available in the middle of June.


One of my favourite UK melodic rockers Newman are about to release their tenth album – YES, tenth album Siren in July. It again will be released on the AOR Heaven label. This will be the first Newman album to feature Pete Newdeck (Eden’s Curse/ Tainted Nation) on drums who co-writes on two songs. There is also special guest appearances from Robert Sall (Work Of Art/W.E.T) and Nick Workman (VEGA) who co-wrote the song ‘When It Comes To Love’.


Petra Degelow, the original singer of cult German melodic rockers Bad Sister, sadly passed away in hospital in Hamburg on May 23rd, after battling a long time illness. She aged just 53.


Jorn has released a video for the title track from his forthcoming album Traveller. As I’ve previously reported Jorn’s band now includes Wig Wam guitarist Trond Holter. Check the video out below.

Neville McDonald has just announced he will be leaving SKIN with immediate effect. This means the bands appearance at Download has now been cancelled and the handful of headline shows prior to the Festival have also been cancelled. Although it doesn’t involve Nev, it’s also worth noting Red, White and Blues will no longer be playing Download or any other scheduled performances.


The Yesterrock label are set to release another long out of print cult AOR gem, this time from Canadian songstress Lisa Price. I’ll let you know when a release date is set!


Frontiers Records have announced their planned August releases, so get prepared for – Fergie Frederiksen Any Given Moment, Arc Angel Harlequins Of Light, Little River Band Cuts Like A Diamond, Find Me Wings Of Love.


Modern melodic rockers Degreed are preparing to release their second album We Don’t Belong later in the year and all the initial reports state this album is set to become a modern day classic.


Z Records have made some adjustments to their upcoming release schedule. AfterdreamsWildfire June 17th, Teri TimsRock Hard July 15th & LegionV September 15th.

We’ve been waiting a long time for this re-issue from Teri Tims, so I’m chomping on the bit to get it! The album is produced by Teri’s husband Paul Sabu.


Rock Candy is yet again working the remastering and re-issues magic this month. They have two REO Speedwagon classic’s You Can Tune A Piano, But you Can’t Tuna Fish & Nine Lives Out On June 17th. Released on the same date are Derringer – Sweet Evil, Randy Hansen’s self titled album and 21 Guns – Salute.