ARTIST:

SIGNAL RED

(UNITED KINGDOM)
TITLE:

ALIEN NATION

(2020)
LABEL:

ESCAPE MUSIC

GENRE:

MELODIC HARD ROCK

TAGS:
Easy-Listening
"Ten's guitarist and Lionheart's voice offer us with Signal Red and this Alien Nation a pleasant opus of soothing and progressive melodic hard music."
LYNOTT (10.11.2020)  
3/5
(0) opinions from our readers (0) comment(s)

A little over two and a half years ago, we crossed paths with a new British band called Signal Red. Genitor of a good melodic hard melodic opus, the combo, guided by Lee Small (ex-Phenomena and Shy), Lionheart's frontman, and guitarist Steve Grocott (Ten), had rather convinced us with a rich and varied "Under The Radar". "Alien Nation", Signal Red's second attempt, has just come out and intends not to disappoint the hopes placed in this new group.

The two protagonists separated here from the Anthony brothers, bassist and drummer. To replace them, they have called upon Steve Newman - boss of the AOR band of the same name and Compass - to hold the four strings, and Daniel Zaman to take care of the drums. As much as "Under The Radar" had brought us closer to Ten - Gary Hughes' band, author of fourteen albums of melodic hard rock - this "Alien Nation" regularly evokes Phenomena - the hard rock combo of Mel Galley (the former guitarist of Whitesnake).

Thus, the direct melodic hard rock of the first opus, where some heavy and power emanations sometimes came to tease our ears, is replaced here by a soothed  melodic hard rock sometimes progressive. Grocott's guitars barriers are gone, the only thing that remains are his aerial solos of a fine technicality.

At the heart of this work, three titles stand out and they are the most muscular ones. 'Email To God', 'Insomnia' and 'Ghosts' catapult towards the listener melodies to be singed in the shower. Phenomena comes to haunt us especially on the less cheerful tracks, as on 'Dance Macabre' and its catchy final orchestration where Ten is not far away. But also on the eponymous track and on the pleasant 'Invisible Scars', where another band appears: Saga. And this old companion resurfaces even more convincingly on 'Pure Shores' (a cover of the title of the pop girl-group All Saints). Also worth mentioning here is the pleasant 'Rocket Fuel' with reminiscences of Vanden Plas, and the less successful 'Awakenings' with its break straight out of a Led Zeppelin album.

Listening to the two Signal Red's creations one after the other, one might wonder if the combo consciously wants to diversify its discourse. Indeed, the difference between the two opuses is surprising. The fact remains that the constructive changes of rhythm, the well-dosed choruses and the richness of the musical arrangements are once again there. This is at least one constant that deserves that we linger on this production which requires several listenings before being tamed.


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SIMILAR BANDS:
SAGA, TEN, PHENOMENA


TRACK LISTING:
01. Wide Awake In Dreamland
02. Email To God
03. Insomnia
04. Dance Macabre
05. Invisible Scars
06. Ghosts
07. Rocket Fuel
08. Awakenings
09. Tide Of Life
10. Pure Shores
11. Alien Nation

LINEUP:
Lee Small: Chant
Steve Grocott: Guitares / Claviers
Daniel Zaman: Batterie / Invité
Steve Newman: Basse / Invité / Choeurs
   
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