Author: 0dayrox

ART OF ILLUSION – X Marks The Spot (2023 reissue + bonus) *HQ*

Swedish band ART OF ILLUSION formed by songwriter & producer Anders Rydholm (AORsters Grand Illusion) and exceptional singer Lars Säfsund (Work Of Art) surprised us some years ago with their delicious debut album “X Marks The Spot”. The album was released by the now defunct AOR Heaven Records, currently a hard to find CD, even more the Japanese pressing.
So the band decided to re-release ”X Marks The Spot” 2023 with the addition of the original Japanese edition bonus track for all fans rejoice.
See what they did there with the band name? Grand Illusion + Work Of Art. And they conjure the best of both bands to deliver timeless melodies which are the key into their music and a homage to the glory days of AOR / melodic rock. Catchy melodies, delicious hooklines and tons of strong harmony vocals are on ‘spot’ here. Among the guitarists providing guitar solos there’s the unique Jay Graydon.
“X Marks The Spot” is simply sublime… albums of this quality only appear from time to time…

IRON SAVIOR – Firestar (2023)

If you like power metal, then IRON SAVIOR is in your playlists, and while they won’t win any awards for breaking the mold and try something adventurous, they are such a consistent band on what they do. They do power metal, with melody, and that’s what you’ll get on their upcoming new album ”Firestar” out next October 6th.
As soon as I put the full album on and you hear the energy of the intro “The Titan,” you immediately know this is going to be epic metal. Then “Curse of the Machinery” blasts out at you and just sweeps you away. This is classic IRON SAVIOR opener with all the ingredients; the speed, the riffs, the solos and those vocal melodies that are part of that signature IRON SAVIOR sound.
Immediately following is the anthem “In the Realm of Heavy Metal.” This is one of those epic songs about metal that celebrate the glory of the genre and its lifestyle.
As said, ”Firestar” doesn’t break any ground, this is just fifty minutes of well crafted metal, melodic, with power…

ROGER WATERS – The Dark Side of the Moon ”Redux” [2023] *HQ*

Next October 6th ROGER WATERS will release ”The Dark Side of the Moon Redux”, his own vision, re-recording of the classic The Dark Side of the Moon (1973) Pink Floyd album, released for the album’s 50th anniversary.
Remasters of classic albums are common, but most of the time, aside from the mixing, the music remains the same. But ”Dark Side of the Moon Redux” by Roger Waters is not that.
‘Redux’ is a reinterpretation of one of the greatest albums of all time. The original is actually the fourth-best-selling album in history. But it takes a big personality to remake a classic album. Roger Waters is a good candidate, but can the former member of Pink Floyd back it up?
The album is definitive proof that while Waters may have written the lyrics to the classic album, the musical composition lacks the grandiose effect it had during his Pink Floyd days. Still, for all its struggles sonically, there are still enough fresh ideas to make it worthwhile.

ROAD – Breaking Out ’86 [Norske Albumklassikere 80-tallet remastered] (2021) *Exclusive*

As part of the ‘80-tallet’ series from the excellent Norwegian reissue label Norske Albumklassikere – which seems to have access to almost every Norwegian release from the 70s and 80s – comes the reissue of ROAD, a hard rock band from Oslo established in the early ’80s. We already featured here Road’s EP from 1985 from these series, now it’s time for the band’s album 1986’s “Breaking Out“, for the first time remastered / on CD.
For this record only founder “Wild” Willy Bendiksen remain, and he enlisted talented musicians for this new version of the band including guitarist Jimmy Iversen and female vocalist Bente Smaavik (backing vocals but also performing lead on one track), both future members of AORsters BLONDE ON BLONDE together with Bendiksen. Also on bass & vocals we find Øystein Ringsby, later mamber of melodic rockers INTUITION.
So expect a much more commercial style & sound on “Breaking Out”, melodic hard rock with synth splashes and lots of harmonies…

ROAD – This Is Just Rock ‘N’ Roll ’83 [Norske Albumklassikere 80-tallet remastered] (2021)

As part of the ‘Norske Albumklassikere 80-tallet’ series from the excellent Norwegian reissue label Norske Albumklassikere – which seems to have access to almost every Norwegian release from the 70s and 80s – comes the reissue of ROAD, a hard rock band from Oslo established in the early ’80s.
We already featured here Road’s EP from 1985 reissued, now it’s time for the band’s debut album 1983’s “This Is Just Rock ‘N’ Roll“, remastered and for the first time on CD.
This very first Road LP featured the band’s original line up, and their style was more early ’80s metal oriented in the Scandinavian vein, spiced with hard rock groove. While on “This Is Just Rock ‘N’ Roll” some songs were wrote / sung in English, others are done in their native language, Norwegian. Far from resulting annoying that adds even more charm to this entertaining platter…

GARY MOORE – After The War [Japan SHM-CD miniLP remastered +4] (2023) *HQ*

Fortunately the excellent SHM-CD format used in Japan is not dead, and now Universal Music Japan is reissuing in 2023 masterpieces from GARY MOORE in a miniLP / cardboard sleeve cover artwork and the latest remastered sound, plus bonus tracks.
1989’s “After The War” – perhaps Moore’s best produced album ever – is one of our favorites from the Irish genius. It was as well the last hard rock album from Gary Moore before he turned a heavy-blues performer. And what a great way to say goodbye to the genre he embraced all over the ’80s.
“After The War” was a return to a harder sound – yet with a glossy production – and ‘real drums’ after his previous more commercial, melodic hard rock oriented album ‘Wild Frontier’. Oh yeah, we have terrific drummers here with god Cozy Powell handling the most, but also Simon Phillips (Toto), Charlie Morgan and Brian Downey (Thin Lizzy).
The rest of personnel is stellar too: Bob Daisley (Ozzy, Uriah Heep) on bass, Neil Carter (UFO) on keyboards, Laurence Cottle, Ozzy, Osbourne, Chris Thompson, and more…

OLIVER / DAWNSON SAXON – Screaming Eagles: The Complete Works [Box Set] (2023)

Back in the mid-Nineties legendary metal act Saxon almost split up with three members going one way, and two or three others going the other. For a while we had two Saxon’s tromping around the planet. Naturally, money and egos were on the line so the lawyers got involved. In the end Biff Byford’s version walked away with the name but the Oliver Dawson Saxon left a bit of a legacy.
In the early 2000’s Graham Oliver and Steve Dawson – both having been founding and long serving members and songwriters of the legendary Saxon and performing on the band’s most classic early albums – launched their own band OLIVER / DAWNSON SAXON. Beginning a journey to not only showcase in a live setting their years as songwriters and key members of Saxon, but to record new music and add a new chapter or two to their legacy.
The result was a band that toured consistently until 2020, along the way they also found time to release the fantastic ‘Motorbiker’ studio album and issue several potent and exciting live releases, where these classic compositions took on a new lease of life.
Now Global Rock and Cherry Red Records have collected all the scraps and there all a lot of them and issued this six-CD box-set titled “Screaming Eagles The Complete Works“. And a marvelous classic metal listen it is…

GARY MOORE – Wild Frontier [Japan SHM-CD miniLP remastered +3] (2023) *HQ*

Fortunately the excellent SHM-CD format used in Japan is not dead, and now Universal Music Japan is reissuing in 2023 masterpieces from GARY MOORE in a miniLP / cardboard sleeve cover artwork, and the latest remastered sound, plus bonus tracks.
Wild Frontier” is one of Gary Moore more “80s sounding album”, melodic and with lots of keyboards according to the era (1987), but still his killer guitar chops are present all over the record.
By 1987, Gary Moore was a well established and experienced guitarist, known for his recordings with Thin Lizzy, Colosseum II and many others, as well as his solo career which by then was going quite well worlwide.
Since about ’83, though, he had been going through the motions, releasing a couple of very commercial sounding LP’s. However, in 1986, his friend and musical soulmate Phil Lynott passed away, and the devastation triggered Gary’s inspiration. He decided to go back to the Irish-tinged hard rock of his Lizzy days, and dedicate his next record to Phil. This turned out to be quite a successful experiment.
Gary took the melodies and harmonies of Thin Lizzy, spiced them up with his own blinding guitar skills, and framed it all inside a typical, reverb-heavy 80s-style production. The songs on here range from dramatic, storytelling epics, to pop metal, to…

DEAD MAN’S WHISKEY – In The Storm (2023)

Island In The Storm” is the new album from DEAD MAN’S WHISKEY, a perfect showcase for one of the most exciting new British acts, a delightful slab of hard-edged rock that pushes the boundaries of heavy metal. Anyone who has seen the band in action recently will know that they are not only a fantastic live outfit, but an incredibly tight unit whose songs contain tons of hooks.
Having your album produced by Chris Clancy and Colin Richardson makes a statement from the start. These guys have worked with Machine Head, Trivium, Massive Wagons just to name a few. Unsurprisingly, “Island In The Storm” is a slick, polished 12 track release, but still has the edge that you want your trad hard rock to have.

There are anthems galore littered through “Island In The Storm” since the opening song ‘Masquerade’ (that follows an atmospheric ‘intro’). Stand it next to the fist punching ‘Do or Die’ and the frenetic drive of the title track; this is an album that is stacked full of top-quality songs…

GOLDEN EARRING – Cut [Remastered & Expanded 2CD] (2023)

Red Bullet Productions just released this excellent 2-CD Remastered & Expanded version of GOLDEN EARRING‘s most popular album, 1982’s “Cut“, featuring the Billboard Hot 100 Top 10 hit ‘Twilight Zone‘, a classic song still getting its place in Classic Rock Radio – and our playlists.
Remastered from the first-generation Soundpush Studios master tapes, the package includes single edits, B-sides and an hour long of previously unreleased outtakes and early versions / mixes.
Originally meant as a ‘goodbye album’, their sixteenth studio record ”Cut” marked Golden Earring’s comeback in 1982. The album’s huge success, both artistically and commercially, heralded a new period for the band. Both the LP and the single ‘Twilight Zone’ topped the charts in their home country, while in the United States the single – thanks to MTV’s heavy rotation – reached the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 in Spring 1983.
Golden Earring also performed forty shows in two months across the United States. At the start of 1983, everything seemed to be right, just as it was in 1974, when ‘Moontan’ and ‘Radar Love’ were climbing the American charts…

SCANDAL featuring Patty Smyth – Warrior [Rock Candy remastered +5] HQ *Exclusive*

Patty Smyth is one of the finest AOR female singers emerged during the ’80s, and his vehicle to stardom was the band SCANDAL. Rock Candy Records reissued their album “Warrior” from 1984 including as bonus tracks the very hard to find 5-track EP debut from the band appeared in 1982, all digitally remastered with a fantastic sound quality.
This is the story of a very successful chart storming band, but it’s also the tale of a band in disarray. Scandal’s debut album won massive acceptance from the American mainstream quickly elevating them to Rock&pop star status, a position enhanced by the allure of vocalist Patty Smyth and her smokey voice.
Lead off track and first single, ‘The Warrior’ (written by Nick Gilder and Holy Knight) was a top 10 hit, helping to define the band’s style and potential reach. Or listen out to ‘Only The Young’ a rare track written by Neal Schon, Steve Perry and Jonathan Cain for JOURNEY’s hit album ‘Frontiers’, but never made it into the final tracklist due to the limited running time available at the moment…

STEVE JONES – Fire And Gasoline [Rock Candy remastered & reloaded +1] HQ *Exclusive*

As requested, here’s in full quality the Rock Candy Records ‘Remastered & Reloaded” versions of the two ’80s albums by STEVE JONES. Here’s the second, Fire And Gasoline, released in 1989 and according to times, sporting a polished hard rock production.
As guests appear The Cult guitarist Billy Duffy & singer Ian Astbury (also co-writing & co-producing), plus Guns N’ Roses’ Axl Rose providing vocals.
I guess The Cult’s core members contribution is really accurate in “Fire And Gasoline”: overall, this album brings to my mind The Cult’s ‘Americanized album’ Sonic Temple…

STEVE JONES – Mercy [Rock Candy remastered & reloaded] HQ *Exclusive*

As requested, here’s in full quality the Rock Candy Records ‘Remastered & Reloaded” versions of the two ’80s albums by STEVE JONES. Founding member of British punk pioneers the Sex Pistols, when the band disintegrated in 1978, the guitarist involved himself in a number of diverse projects but also faced some serious lifestyle issues. Relocating to the USA, amidst a period of serious drug dependency, he looked to a process of recovery by building a career as a solo artist.
Signed to MCA, his debut solo album Mercy, issued in 1987, showcased a new hard rock–minded guitarist. Choosing to focus on songs and melody, the record turned heads for an entirely different reason than the Sex Pistols…

ONI LOGAN – The Cosmic Trust Sessions (2023) *Exclusive*

Former Lynch Mob frontman ONI LOGAN is releasing a new EP titled ‘‘The Cosmic Trust Sessions” only available on physical format.
We’re all fans of Oni Logan unique voice. His work on the first Lynch Mob album was stupendous and we always thought his subsequent absence from the hard rock scene was nothing short of a crime. Sure, Oni recorded an album in the early Nineties with his band Violet Demise but never officially released – put out by Oni himself in limited copies as ‘LOGAN / ROBERTSON – Revisited’ and featured in exclusive at 0dayrox some time ago.
Since then, Logan recorded / wrote for others and released a solo album, however far from the hard rock style we love from him. Well, he’s back 2023 with a new band named Oni Logan & The Wicked Mob, and there’s an album in the making.
But let’s talk about this EP ”The Cosmic Trust Sessions” recorded last year, delivering some rocking tracks with that Lynch Mob feeling plus some heavy bluesy classic rock touches and certain darkness. All the material is very strong, timeless, and very well arranged, performed and produced…

EMIL SIGFRIDSSON – Back To Yesterday (2023)

Swedish musician / songwriter EMIL SIGFRIDSSON is well known in Scandinavia as producer of musicals such as Dracula, Peter Pan, Jesus Christ Superstar, Rock of Ages, We Will Rock You and most recently The Phantom of the Opera. However his true love is being a performer. In the early 2000’s Emil participated on the TV show Fame Factory, in 2003 released his debut album which sold gold and also topped the local chart, toured Europe and got a slot in the renowned Melodifestivalen.
Since then Emil recorded another album and collaborated with other artists / bands but mostly concentrated in producing musicals… until now. While he born in 1980 and was a child during the decade, the musical culture of the time impregnated his soul forever.
So 2023 sees EMIL SIGFRIDSSON releasing the new album ”Back To Yesterday“. It’s quite easy to guess the music inside this CD: look at the cover art, the album’s title, the songs like ‘We’re Gonna Rock Tonight’, ‘Can I Run Away’, ‘Rockstar Passion’, ‘Dancing With An Angel’… this is pure ’80s influenced.
Emil takes the metrics of Survivor, Foreigner, Preview, etc, and puts his own Scandi melodic rock stamp on it to create a sweet collection of melodies and catchy tunes.
Fans of the genre rejoice.