SUNSTORM – Afterlife

The first three Sunstorm albums are classic melodic rock discs. Between a set of great songs and the strong vocal presence of the legendary Joe Lynn Turner, ‘Sunstorm’, ‘House of Dreams’ and ‘Emotional Fire’ (issued between 2006 and 2012) gave AOR fans a trilogy of unmissable releases, each one providing a great showcase for Turner, a man whose voice sounded pretty much as good as it did back in 1981. While the next two releases took on a slightly heavier direction – moving away somewhat from Sunstorm’s original remit – some well written songs and strong vocal performances ensured they were still enjoyable listens.

At the end of 2020, it was announced that Turner had parted ways with the band. This would be a massive blow for his many fans who’d primarily stuck with Sunstorm due to his involvement. More importantly, his absence means that 2021’s ‘Afterlife’ showcases a Sunstorm with absolutely no original members. The core of the band have only been in place since 2018’s ‘Road To Hell’, and the only link with anything further back comes via keyboard player Alessandro Del Vecchio – and he doesn’t really count, as he’s the record label’s hired hand who’ll basically play on absolutely anything for a few quid. With ‘Afterlife’ being Sunstotm in name only, maybe it was time to throw in the towel?

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REVOLUTION ROAD – Revolution Road

RRSnakes In Paradise, a Swedish band with an unhealthy Whitesnake obsession, released two rather fine albums back in the early-mid 90s. A self-titled/self released disc in 1993 set the bands bluesy AOR stall out for all to see, before a follow up ‘Garden of Eden’ [released on the now defunct MTM Music label] offered much more of the same a couple of years on, with a slightly bigger budget and increased confidence. The band were great at what they did and a good proportion of that greatness laid in the hands of vocalist Stefan Berggren, a man with a confident and natural delivery carrying more than a hint of Europe’s Joey Tempest in his style. SIP were never going to make the world think differently about big eighties rock sounds, but they gained a loyal fan base. Berggren’s talent had not gone unnoticed: after the demise of his own band, he was invited to become vocalist with Company of Snakes, a classic hard rock vehicle for ex-Whitesnake men Micky Moody and Bernie Marsden.

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