JAVA – Change Of Heart [Limited Numbered Edition – 1,000 copies] (2017)
“Change Of Heart” is the album recorded by JAVA in 1987 but never released… until now. After 30 years shelved, the record from this female-fronted AOR / Melodic Rock act finally sees the light of day. This is a very Limited Numbered Edition on CD only.
Java started off as a covers band in 1987 but they were soon writing their own material which wasn’t what the clubs back then wanted. Founding members Rosella Santoro (vocals/keyboards) and partner Rob Deegan (bass) then set about looking for like-minded musicians to make their AOR dreams come true; enter Darran Bridge (drums) and Martin Latham (guitar).
Java soon became firm favorites on the London Rock scene, playing many live dates and filming a video for their song ‘Helpless’ which would also end up on the ‘Kerrang!’ album sampler ‘Powercuts’.
Not long after this, they entered the studio in the summer of 1987 – with Guy Bidmead (Whitesnake, Motorhead, etc.) at the production helm – to start work on their debut album.
Unfortunately, even with this strong record in the can to shop around to the labels of the day, nothing happened and that elusive record deal never arrived.
They soldiered on for a while, with Santoro and Deegan especially keeping positive about things, but eventually, the band split up.
However, for lovers of obscure ’80s AOR rejoice, finally this little lost gem sees the light of day in all its remastered glory.
As soon as I played it, “Change Of Heart” took me straight back to those ’80s days when bands like Saraya, the melodic era of Girlschool, Laos, If Only (Jackie Bodimead) and alike ruled the female fronted Melodic Rock scene.
What you have here is a very fine example of classy Melodic Rock with a woman at the mic, full of great songs and, for that time, some quite wonderful musicianship.
Just lend an ear to ‘Helpless’, ‘Forever And Ever’, the jumping ‘Mama’s Boy’, ‘You Really Do Know’ (with its superb guitar solo) and the big ballad ‘For Those That Love You Still’ and wonder to yourself just why this lot didn’t get anywhere when some acts with half the talent went all the way (another one of music’s great mysteries).
Collectors of classy ’80s AOR / Melodic Rock will be grinning from ear to ear at its release, and fans of those genres could do a lot worse than to get a copy for themselves, strictly limited to 1,000 copies.
“Change Of Heart” is thirty years old now, but it still sounds as fresh as if it came out last week – good music will always win out in the end.
A collectors piece – HIGHLY Recommended
01 – Forever and Ever
02 – Change of Heart
03 – Helpless
04 – For Those Who Love You Still
05 – Hellraiser
06 – Can You Get Enough
07 – You and I
08 – You Really Do Know
09 – This Is the Time
10 – Mama’s Boy
Rosella Santoro: Vocals, Keyboards
Rob Deegan: Bass and backing vocals
Darran Bridge: Drums and backing vocals
Martin Latham: All Guitars and backing vocals
Produced by: Guy Bidmead (Whitesnake, Grand Prix)
Engineered by: Guy Bidmead & Dennis Herman
Recorded 1987 at Chestnut studios in Farnham, Surrey