Guitarist Tony Hernando will be familiar to some melodic rock fans through his associations with powerhouse vocalist Ronnie Romero, and their work together as members of Spanish metal band Lords of Black. Although that band’s huge riffs helped to put Hernando in the spotlight across Europe, its with his side project, Restless Spirits, the musician really shines. When working under that moniker, Hernando’s work takes a far more tuneful approach as he tackles a broad variety of melodic rock styles. In addition, the band’s role call of guest vocalists on their debut from 2019 – including Hardline men Deen Castronovo and Johnny Gioeli, and the brilliant Dino Jelusic – helped to bring Tony’s work to an even broader audience.
After his associations with Ritchie Blackmore came to an end, vocalist Ronnie Romero didn’t take any time out to reflect on the loss of his highest profile job to date. Instead, he threw himself further into his work. In 2020 he reconvened with his old band, Lords of Black, and released the heavy, semi-theatrical ‘Alchemy of Souls, Part 1’; gained a job as frontman with the new-look Vandenberg; forged associations with Michael Schenker’s revolving cast of stars, and became a member of Milan Vrabevski’s Intelligent Music Project. For most people, this would already represent too much of a heavy workload, but on top of that, Romero also took on the job of being Joe Lynn Turner’s replacement in the much-loved Sunstorm. Their sixth album ‘Afterlife’ (released in the first half of 2021) was much better than it had any right to be, and cemented Ron’s reputation as a reliable and committed performer. One thing was for certain: he didn’t need Blackmore.