THE MORNING AFTER – Legacy (2011)


Who the heck are THE MORNING AFTER and why I never heard about them before? Because “Legacy” is their second album, and a bloody great one for sure.
There’s some reasons why Melodic Rock fans like me missed this Essex, UK based band under their radar.
First of all, The Morning After have a Japanese recording contract (they are really well known in Asia) and their debut only was released in Japan and poorly distributed in Europe.
Second, style-wise, the first album ‘You Can’t Hurt Steel’ was Euro melodic metal oriented, and consequently labeled as ‘metal’.

Well folks, fasten your seat belts, as “Legacy” is one of a Hell album fusing 80’s American Melodic Hard Rock, 80’s British AOR rock, traditional late NWOBHM and lovely cheesy Hair Metal.
A disgusting salad? Not at all, this is one of the most exciting recordings coming out from the Isles in many years. Not grandiose or groundbreaking, just a catchy and smooth brand of stadium rock.
To give you an idea, on “Legacy” The Morning After sounds as Icon self-titled album blended with their ‘Right Between The Eyes’ era, Tobruk ‘Wild On The Run’, Def Leppard’s ‘Pyromania’ and mid-eighties Tygers Of Pan Tang, all mashed up with style and attitude.
The silky hair metal vocals of Sam Ryder sometimes gets rough for good effect, and his guitar together with the leads of Phil Maher many times gives to the music a Thin Lizzy-style dual riff harmony, strong and melodic.

The great instrumental intro/title track “Legacy” featuring a tuneful melodic guitar lead is linked with the scorching melodic hard rocker “Into The Fire”, a hooky track with excellent backing vocals. This band is huge in the harmonic vocal arrangements, present on all tracks, combining the guitar player and bassist backing voices with the leads of Ryder obtaining astonishing results.
Follower “Limit” is more American oriented, an uptempo rocker again with soaring vocals and 2 kick ass six string solos.
The lead single “America” is a magical rockin’ Melodic Rock / AOR belter, commercial and catchy, but the more simple and instant tune here. Don’t be fooled, this album is much more meaty than this likeable track.

There’s many hooks and killer riffs on “The Witch Is On My Back” and the slightly NWOBHM melodic “Over The Wire” which features a fantastic stirring solo.
“Stream Of Stars” is the more ambitious track on the album, a 10 minute anthemic track full of harmonized vocals and epic guitars. Includes a great middle section showing many influences, from Tobruk to Pretty Maids and even Queen.
“These Hills Have Eyes” has an eighties melodic rock spirit in a crossroad with classic British Hard Rock, on “Powerdrive” I hear some Scandinavian influences, and “Nightmare Planet” is melodic but with an edge.
“Seasons” is the only ballad on the album, eighties inspired, complete with string arrangements and a charming, ethereal harmonic vocalization.
Last track “I Walk With Giants” is pretty Americanized, driven by a pounding rhythm section and a continuous melodic guitar line in the Night Ranger style.

“Legacy” is an unexpected surprise in year that doesn’t stop to deliver hight quality albums.
The Morning After has the chops, the melodies, the hooks and a great musical direction, blending many sub-genres and influences with fantastic results.
Not all the songwriting here is consistent, but the inspired riffs, the sing-along choruses and the feel good vibe on this recording makes this CD a real winner.
There’s a true ‘hungry for glory’ feel on “Legacy”, an album that arena Melodic Rock fans will ENJOY with Capitals.
Highly Recommended.

1. Legacy
2. Into The Fire
3. Limit
4. America
5. The Witch Is On My Back
6. Over The Wire
7. Streams Of Stars
8. These Hills Have Eyes
9. Powerdrive
10. Rest In Pieces
11. Nightmare Planet
12. Seasons
13. I Walk With Giants

Sam Ryder – Lead Vocals, Guitar
Phil Maher – Lead Guitar, Vocals
Gary Stone – Bass, Vocals
Jake Booth – Drums

You’ve seen it first here, at zerodayrock


1 Response

  1. Hmn. While Work Of Art's latest album kicks the hell out of this as far as hooks and execution goes, this seems like a pretty good album. 🙂

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