Artist:  Sonic Station
   Title: Sonic Station
   Label: Frontiers Records
 

2011 was another great year for Melodic and Hard Rock, not just for the established bands, but also for the great number of new bands and projects keeping the flame burning for the scene we all love.  Now 2012 looks set to carry one where last year left off, as Sonic Station, a new Westcoast AOR Project put together by Swedish guitarist, producer and composer Alexander Kronbrink, releases its self titled debut release.

The album boasts not one but four vocalists, both male and female, each one bringing their own stamp on the classic AOR sound and bringing it slap bang into the now.  The album also boasts a host of musical talent with five bass players, three drummers, four keyboard players, three backing vocalists, as well as a saxophone player, a percussionist and a trumpet / flugelhorn player, with Kronbrink being the lone guitarist.

So with a wealth of talent to bring his vision into being, Kronbrink has produced an album that has that 80’s vibe but with a more modern edge and clarity.

After the intro the album gets off to great start from the opener ‘ Loves Gonna Show The Way’, featuring the vocals of Magnus Bäcklund, who has the perfect voice for West Coast AOR and could deliver any Chicago or REO Speedwagon song with ease.

The first of the female vocalist to feature is Marika Willstedt, who tugs at the heart strings on the haunting ‘I Wish I Could Lie.  Next up on the vocal front is Kristoffer Fogelmark, who along with Saxophonist Erik Palmberg, deliver the perfect harmonies on the ballad ‘Hold On To Me’.

Bringing a little rockier edge to proceedings are the sonic tones of Tove lo on ‘You Have To Let Me Go’.  This one has that Pat Benatar feel to it.  A much more riff filled edge than the previous tracks.   It's back to the gentler AOR feel as Bäcklund delivers another stirring vocal on ‘The Most Beautiful Fear’, before Willstedt brings out the big guns for the stunning ‘Running Through The Night’.  This is modern West Coast AOR at its very best.  Fogelmark really puts his heart and soul into things with the mesmerising guitar work of Kronbrink on the fantastic ‘Never Let The Sun Die’.

The album closes with three songs featuring Willstedt and one where she duets with Fogelmark.  The first of these is sublime harmony rich ‘My Last Refrain’, then it’s the duet ‘Love Your More’, featuring some soaring guitar work from Kronbrink, which is only topped by the stunning vocals.

The album closes with the ballad ‘Reason’, which for me is the icing on the AOR cake.  Without a doubt Kronbrink has captured the best of 80's Westcoast AOR and given it modern edge.

 Tracklisting:

1. Intro
2. Love's Gonna Show The Way
3. I Wish I Could Lie
4. Hold On To Me
5. The Most Beautiful Fear
6. Running Through The Night
7. Never Let The Sunshine Die
8. My Last Refrain
9. Love You More
10. Reasons
 

                  

 

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