THE FRONT (Tommy Funderburk) ‎– The Front [Japan Cool Sound remaster COOL-079] *Exclusive*

THE FRONT (Tommy Funderburk) ‎– The Front [Japanese Cool Sound reissue] *Exclusive* - full

Tommy Funderburk’s ‘What If’ album featured here yesterday triggered a request for this ’80s band THE FRONT, formed by Funderburk and drummer Bob Wilson (from cult pompsters Seawind) and their only, self-titled album “The Front” in this Japanese remastered reissue done by prestigious AOR specialized label Cool Sound.

With Tommy Funderburk at front – the man who has recorded harmony vocals on hundreds of your ’80s favorite albums – and a project created in 1983 you would expect a classy AOR collection of songs. And you’re right.
However Funderburk / Wilson tried something different from the usual for the genre on some tracks, like distinct percussion and string arrangements.

Of course, the session musicians are top class; the unique Dan Huff on guitar, Larry Williams (Pages, David Foster, Richard Marx) on keyboards, Ron Wikso (The Storm) on electronic drums, Tom Kelly (Airplay and dozens more) on backing vocals & arrangements, and more.
And yeah, Tommy’s angelical vocals shine as usual.

On “It’s Hard To Take” the vocal phrasing and sustain are incredible. A track with a clear first half of the ’80s vibe and atmosphere. “Holy Light” has more strong guitars and a terrific melody / chorus. This a great tune in the vein of the LA Session era.
“All Under Him” and “Tonight” (wonderful lyrics on the latter) are calmer, West Coast oriented tracks with breezy vocal lines and smooth production.

“King Of Glory” has an excellent vocal arrangement with a very late Seventies FM Soft Rock style, on the opposite “The Promise” is very modern for its era (reminds me ’80s Alan Parsons meets Asia), while “Silent Night” is a tasteful midtempo AOR song with elegant guitars.

One of my favorites from the album is “How Long”, a killer pumping AOR trademark 1984. Seems simple at first glance, but this is a serious monster AOR song with a massive guitar solo by Dann Huff.

The album release was followed by a U.S. tour in 1984 and a European leg in 1985 with the line up o Funderburk on vocals, Wilson on drums, Seawind alumni Buddy Nuanez and Ken Wild on bass and guitar, and John Andrew Schreiner on keyboards.
“The Front” sounds unmistakably ‘American 1984’ recording, pristine and slick. After many years out of print, this welcomed Cool Sound remaster provides the proper output to the album for modern audio equipment.
It looks out of print again, but you can try asking the label vie email.
Highly Recommended

You’ve seen it first at 0dayrox


ザ・フロント 『 C O O L ~ 079 』

01 – It’s Hard To Take
02 – Holy Light
03 – All Under Him
04 – King Of Glory
05 – The Promise
06 – Silent Night
07 – Tonight
08 – How Long

Lead & Backing Vocals, Producer – Tommy Funderburk
Drums, Keyboards, Producer – Bob Wilson
Guitar – Dan Huff
Guitar, Bass – Kevin Clark
Bass – Dennis Bellfield
Keyboards – Larry Williams
Simmons Drums – Ron Wikso
Harmony Vocals: Tata Vega (4, 6), Tom Kelly (2, 4)
Backing Vocals: Andraé Crouch, Kristle Edwards, Linda McCrary, Phyllis St. James


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1 Response

  1. melodified says:

    In…Elefante fashion! I didn’t know this album, although I am sure that I’ve heard the first song of the album decades ago. Thank you very much!

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