SOUL SELLER – Back To Life (2011)


Italian’s SOUL SELLER were formed in 1999, and after several starts, stops & personnel changes, the band is releasing the appropriately titled CD “Back To Life”.
Soul Seller’s sound is straight out of Eighties melodic rock blended with catchy hook-laden AOR and a slight hard rock edge in the same vein as Khymera, Shining Line and early Bon Jovi.

They build their songs around distinctive sing-along choruses and melodic vocal parts, while the music has an anthemic approach featuring roaring toned guitar runs that wash over you, which are complimented by some excellent backline interactions.
Michael Carrata’s stunning vocal presence delivers hook after hook, calling to mind a young Jon Bon Jovi. Alessandro Del Vecchio (Shining Line, Lionville, Eden’s Curse) was in charge for the crisp production, also contributing with the arrangements and vocal harmonies.

The album starts brilliantly with the track “Wings Of Freedom” that just grabs you immediately with its energy and excellent melodic hook. The chorus is catchy as Hell, featuring great harmonic lead and backing vocals.
Next track “Change Your Heart Tonight” is a beautiful summertime AOR tune with a commercial sound and a fantastic guitar solo from Danilo Bar (White Skull), followed by the very European melodic midtempo semi-ballad “All I Can Promise” filled with nice keyboards and a truly fine chorus.
A guest vocal duet appears courtesy of Oliver Hartmann on the song “Keep On Moving” and it leads to a more heartbeat pacer which steams with 80’s vibes all over.

“Hope On The Horizon” is a short, neat piano intro that brings in one of the best tracks on the album: “Old Hero’s Prayer”. This is a great ‘in the air’ sweet melodic rock with a chorus that never wants to end. Very Bon Jovi-esque in the vocal styling and delivery of Michael Carrata, not to mention the song structure.
The band really delivers some harder edged rock on the massive title track “Back To Life”, where Carrata’s vocals are outstanding, reminding me here a little of Michael Luppi (Los Angeles).
He shines again on the touching AOR power ballad “Hell Of Tears”, where the band offers a sweeping arena sound full of melody. The strangely titled “A Message from Planet Venus” has a simple but really effective straight-forward melodic rock riff.
“New Power Day” add some edge that scream 80’s hard rock mainstream, and follower “Rock Still Stands” is even more harder, showing that Soul Seller has a real rocking fire inside their melodic heart.
The interestingly titled “Beautiful Heretic’s Dream” closes the album in great form with a retro classy feel, combining a powerful riff, lots of keyboards and stunning vocals.

Soul Seller has released a storming album that calls to mind those heady days of the 80’s.
“Back To Life” rocks focused on the melodies, the hooks and the sing-along choruses, just how good Melodic Rock music should be made.
The musicianship is truly great, and the solid songwriting surpasses the usual routine you hear form bands in genre. They add some classy AOR or a hard edge to some songs to make the whole thing even more interesting.
Alessandro Del Vecchio has done a great job producing, giving to the music a crisp and catchy (yet sometimes edgy) sound that suits the songs very well.
“Back To Life” is an album that will no doubt be overshadowed by releases from higher profiled bands. But it’s one of the best Melodic Rock CD’s of the year that deserves to be placed high on any list.
Highly Recommended.

01 – Wings Of Freedom
02 – Change Your Heart Tonight
03 – All I Can Promise
04 – Keep On Moving
05 – Hope On The Horizon
06 – Old Hero’s Prayer
07 – Back To Life
08 – Hell Of Tears
09 – A Message From Planet Venus
10 – New Power Day
11 – Rock Still Stands
12 – Beautiful Heretic’s Dream

Michael Carrata: Lead & backing vocals
Dave Zublena: Rhythm guitars, lead & acoustic guitars
Cris Audisio: Lead guitars & guitar solos
Mike Zublena: Bass
Steve Bucci: Drums

Very Special Guests:
Oliver Hartmann: Lead vocal duet on “Keep On Moving”
Danilo Bar: Guitar solo on “Change Your Heart Tonight”
Additional musicians:
Alessandro Del Vecchio: Backing vocals
Cristiano Conti: All keyboards
Claudio Beneventi: Additional guitars
Davide ‘Dave Rox’ Barbieri: Backing vocals on “Back To Life”


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