Music ReviewsREVIEWSNIGHT RANGER “HOLE IN THE SUN”

    THE STORY SO FAR: Features original members Jack Blades, Jeff Watson, Kelly Keagy and Brad Gillis. From the guitar attack of the opener ‘Tell Your Vision’, reminiscent of Damn Yankees, to the grandeur of a power ballad like ‘There Is Life’, plus straight ahead rock numbers like ‘Drama Queen’ and the title track, Night Ranger’s Hole In The Sun album has everything the fans could ask.   THE CRITICISM “Hole In the Sun”...
August 10, 20089 min
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THE STORY SO FAR:

Features original members Jack Blades, Jeff Watson, Kelly Keagy and Brad Gillis. From the guitar attack of the opener ‘Tell Your Vision’, reminiscent of Damn Yankees, to the grandeur of a power ballad like ‘There Is Life’, plus straight ahead rock numbers like ‘Drama Queen’ and the title track, Night Ranger’s Hole In The Sun album has everything the fans could ask.

 

THE CRITICISM

“Hole In the Sun” is the first Night Ranger album to come to fruition in a very long time, and it may very well be the last having the original lineup somewhat intact. Alot of people are awaiting this anxiously, and some may be disappointed. Make no mistake though, no matter what kind of slander this disc is wrung through in the next several months, it is still a very good album. One that sounds fresh, quite modern, yet fittingly so. It lays on the modern feel in thick layers, but Night Ranger handles the stylistic tweakings at times with natural class. Other songs its a complete disaster. There are punk-ish moments, songs that could have been lifted off of any number of pop stars’ discs, but the cream of the crop are never obnoxious, and rarely render an out of place feeling (a case could be made for the stray track or two that takes things too much to the extreme end of the spectrum). Every song doesn’t ring out as a superb example of rock’s finest, nor Night Ranger’s best, but atleast they are streamlined and seem to have themselves worked out decently enough for the most part.

 

TRACK LIST

 

1. Tell Your Vision
2. Drama Queen
3. You’re Gonna Hear from Me
4. Whatever Happened
5. There Is Life
6. Rockstar
7. Hole in the Sun
8. Fool in Me
9. White Knuckle Ride
10. Revelation 4AM
11. Wrap It Up
12. Being

 

What the hell is the deal with the bonus acoustic tracks? I like the added bonus value, but it throws off the theme. These are such slow burners, that it ruins the rocking mood. But, I guess that nobody cares. I guess I’m just weird.Â

 

Upon first listen the album might be a bit of a departure for fans of the band. But, when I really thought about the bands earlier material with songs like â??Eddieâ??s Coming Out Tonightâ?, â??Can Find Me A Thrillâ? and â??Touch Of Madnessâ? a song like â??Tell Your Visionâ? isnâ??t that far off. I mean one of the elements I touched on a moment ago was the killer guitar work this band has always offered. The twin guitar attack has always been way above your average melodic rock act and so it should come as no surprise that those elements remain intact on â??Hole In The Sunâ?.

After the impressive beginning to the record the second song, â??Drama Queenâ?, starts out with a contemporary guitar sound but upon repeated listening reminds me of their classic â??You Can Still Rock In Americaâ? in its feel. Itâ??s a catchy song, which may have you singing along by the end, and again it features some downright cool guitar work. â??Youâ??re Gonna Hear it From Meâ? is another song with an updated sound from the band but the chorus is catchy and the song is a fun listen.

 

Unfortunately, there are moments when their elements fail to come together in a pleasing way. This was bound to happen seeing as how many boundaries are pushed as they go overboard in taking things to the next level. There are enough good songs here to save the disc, but older fans of Night Ranger may feel disillusioned, if not completely feeling left out in the cold. They might want to sit it out with the keyboardist (who is underused and nonexistent). Michael Lardie is getting no love on this disc as a member, that’s for sure. Night Ranger is not the same band as they used to be, but after such an extensive gap between albums, it was ludicrous to expect otherwise. That’s why I can’t recommend it. Maybe a quick download of the title track, but that’s it.

 

THE BREAKDOWN

  • Final Score: 80% – C

 

RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW!

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TroyAnderson

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