This crunchy, ballsy debut album from Toseland kicks off in blistering fashion with ‘Life Is Beautiful’, a guaranteed wake-up call.
Fronted by James Toseland, former world Superbike champion, and produced by Little Angels’ Toby Jepson, it’s a solid set from the start, and with a heavy slice of classic sleaze in there too.
‘Gotta Be A Better Way’ opens with a catchy riff, and the quick fire vocals have an alternative feel, while ‘Singer In A Band’ is classic late 80s anthemic sleaze seriously beefed up. ‘Just No Way’ is more power metal ballad, a big number with solid vocals and the sound bolstered by the piano and production.
Zurab Melua’s guitar stands out and matches James’ vocals well. There’s something Bon Jovi-esque about the vocals on ‘Comin’ To Get Ya’, but there’s more of a high octane feel about the song.
It’s a good sound, good vibe, that encompasses a couple of Metal genres. Jepson’s piano throughout the album adds an extra dimension.
The production is big without being too overblown – the energy comes through. It’s easy to see why the band have already built up a serious live reputation.
While a couple of the tracks kind of run into each other or pass you by, there are some serious standouts, including the opening track and also ‘Kingdoms’ – an uplifting melodic number that retains the speed, power, blistering solo and rock n’ roll piano (a hint of ‘Freedom Call’ in there). Those two are more than deserving of airplay.
The title track finishes with a flourish – definitely an album worth checking out.
1. Life Is Beautiful
2. Gotta Be a Better Way
3. Singer in a Band
4. Crash Landing
5. Just No Way
6. Comin’ to Get Ya
7. Good Eye Blind
9. Burning the System
Toseland – Renegade (2014)
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