|Jim Peterik Above The Storm||Frontiers Records|
Jim Peterik keeps the recent momentum of his post-Survivor career going with a brand new solo release, squeezed in-between Pride Of Lions duties.
Jim returns to the soulful, earthy rock n roll tone of his World Stage project, which is an outlet for the other half of Jim's writing skills, when he is not concentrating on AOR.|
Like the World Stage release, Above The Storm features a Midwestern style straightforwardness that has seen Jim become a popular co-writer with the likes of Lynyrd Skynyrd and 38 Special.
On board for the album are some old friends and faces, including Ed Breckenfeld, Klem Hayes and Mike Aquino (Pride Of Lions) and the Ides Of March guys, although the main musical credit must go to Jim himself, who supplies a majority of the instrumentation.
For those who have followed Jim's career and don't need converting, this will be a welcomed release that touches on familiar themes – spirituality, love, family and facing life's challenges head on.
For those that haven't warmed to the Pride of Lions material, this might offer an alternative opportunity to appreciate one of the melodic scene's finest writers.
Given the nature of the album's style, it might even appeal to a few new folk - those that look for positive lyrical content within their music and like the melodic, yet back to basics sound of such bands as 38 Special and David Carl.
Not every track works, but the majority do and Jim's vocals, while a little rough, sound better than ever.
Live Life and Burning With A Reason give the album a flying start. Two energetic rockers with a southern rock 38 Special feel and some great guitar work give notice that even as a solo artist, Jim's a rocker.
The soulful mid-tempo Above The Storm delivers a sentimental message and one of Jim's more expressive vocals to date.
In The Days We Have and Stand And Be Counted both vary the tempo and offer more fine melodic choruses.
At This Time Of Night has an interesting swagger and a chorus hook that won't let you forget it.
The next few tracks explore the romantic side of life and change the pace of the album a little. Talent For Loving You is true romantic ballad, but is perhaps just a little too nice for me. Jim counteracts with my favourite track of the album. Hiding From Yourself is a first rate melodic rocker that sounds like a classic 38 Special/Don Barnes anthem.
The album closes with a couple of slower tracks, which in some ways take away from the momentum of the first half of the album.
Not bad tracks by any stretch, but perhaps closing the album after Hiding From Yourself might have been a better idea.
Perhaps a couple of tracks too long and a little too nice in places, this is still another great release that Jim can be proud of.
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