Fergie Frederiksen - 'Any Given Moment' Hot

Added by James Gaden     September 05, 2013    
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Another album which could easily go up against any of the best releases he has featured on.

You don’t read comments like “You will be hard pressed to find a much better Melodic Hard Rock album than this one” often, but back in 2011 those are exactly the words used by our very own Carl Buxton to convey just how highly he rated ‘Happiness Is The Road’ by one time LeRoux, Trillion and of course Toto frontman Fergie Frederiksen. Given also that the double F had while recording that CD been diagnosed with inoperable liver cancer, it was amazing he managed to release anything at all, never mind an album which received praise like that.

Thankfully after seeking alternative cures Fergie found himself in a good place health-wise, however rather than rest on his laurels, he’s back with another barrage of up-beat, up-tempo, uplifting tracks that will provide the soundtrack to your (at the time of writing) glorious summer. Vocally the man is on top, top form, that unmistakably clear range ringing true and proud, a powerful punch laying down a challenge to the songs themselves to live up to. However with the hugely respected man of ever growing melodic rock influence, Alessandro Del Vecchio, being the main foil for Fergie this time out, live up to that voice they do and with room to spare, the keyboard player offering up some sumptuous instrumental work and a pristine production for good measure. However ADV (doesn’t he manage Tottenham Hotspur??) isn’t the only big name contributor with guitar pyrotechnics from Robert Sall (W.E.T., Work Of Art), Bruce Gaitsch (Richard Marx, Chicago, Peter Cetera), Walter Caliaro (Edge Of Forever), Sven Larsson (Street Talk) and Peter Friestedt all adding extra oomph to an album already simply oomphing at the seams.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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However even with all those respected contributors, the name involved on this album that will make melodic rockers turn their heads, is a certain lady going under the name of Issa, with the current darling of the scene dueting with Fergie on ‘Not Alone’. Oddly enough however, on an album where ‘Last Battle Of My War’ jabs and parries in a Grand Illusion style, ‘I’ll Be The One’ sways and shimmies with lighters held aloft, ‘Candles In The Dark’ swirls and spins through wonderful gang vocals and ‘When The Battle Is Over’ pounds and struts for all its worth, the song that will undoubtedly gain this album extra attention, ‘Not Alone’, simply refuses to set the world on fire. Instead it feels all a bit perfunctory and dare I say it, there’s very little spark between the two singers in question. However a thumping cover of ‘Angels Don’t Cry’ from the Toto (and Frederiksen led) album ‘Isolation’ soon makes you forget this one let-down on an otherwise excellent album.

Hats off to Fergie who has used an experience that would defeat many of us to deliver not one, but now two albums that easily go up against any of the best releases he has been part of in a long and illustrious career.

Steven Reid

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Franco Cerchiari said:

After being ousted as the singer for Toto, Dennis "Fergie" Frederiksen began a solo tour project using the name "Toto," singing songs that predated his time as a member of that band. Immediately the band began legal action to stop him from using the name, "Toto," just like they had done to previous vocalist Bobby Kimball. It was then Fergie began to live his life away from the music industry. About this time he was being interviewed about his decision to leave the music industry and it was Fergie Fredericksen who stated, "...I tried to do without [music] but I was miserable." Such words are proof that there are those whose life in music means more to them than just as a means of earning a paycheck. Music is a part of their very exsistance, and not having it around, makes them "...miserable." That passion is heard loud and clear on this, Fergie Frederiksen's Any Given Moment.

Putting his heart and soul into this release, this perfect melodic rock album opens with "Last Battle of My War," a track that overflows with a wall of sound. From the mid track killer keyboard solo to the solid blanket of guitars it doesn't seem that there is room to hold anything else. Faced with a mountain of sound, the listener sits back and becomes entrapped in a glorious, typhoon of heaven sent melodic rock. The following track, "Let Go," pulls back the reins somewhat giving the fan time to catch their breath, but not for long when the buildup of track 3, "Price For Loving You," comes along with some absolutely fantastic drumming during the intro and again, it is best to hold on for dear life, for you are about to being taken on a music rollercoaster. Starting slow enough it swells in intensity until one is lost during the chorus in a simply marvelous harmonic track. Here on "Let Go," Fergie sings his lungs out and on many occasions impresses with just how great of a range he does have. Alessandro Del Vecchio proves on "Let Go," why he is the "go to" guy for anyone wanting some incredible keyboard work. Also heard on this CD is "Angel Don't Cry," that was also featured on Toto's 1984 release, Isolation. While the version on Isolation was telltale 1980's with an uptempo beat that was very prevalent during the early part of that decade, danceable, poppy and played at a much faster pace, here on 2013's Any Given Moment the sound has a slightly more - for a lack of better words - darker, deeper sound. The guitars, drums, bass, and keyboards here are heavier, louder, and presented with a more modern edge.

So hard to pick "CD highlights," for every track was just marvelous. The soft, reflective piano and acoustic guitars of the touching "How Many Roads," almost brought tears to my eyes, as this was a beautiful beyond belief track. I loved "Not Alone," that featured a duet with the stunningly gorgeous singer Isabelle (Issa) Overseen. Just as good was "Candles in the Dark," a lively track that transfixes the listener as this was just amazing. Perfect buildup during the bridge into the chorus, verses that glowed with sensational musicianship and I found myself closing my eyes and just letting the music overtake me.

Letting the music overtake you. That is when you know, beyond any possible doubt that you are in for a high that only music can give. When the sounds from the CD do more than cause you to nod your head, or reach for the volume knob but instead when you just lay back and become part of the landscape and get lost in a sea of emotions, lyrics and musicians that put everything they have into creating not just a song but an experience. And this, Fergie Frederiksen's simply incredible Any Given Moment was just that - a delightful, wonderful experience. Thank you, Fergie for the music, I couldn't praise this CD any higher if I was the most gifted writer in the world.

September 21, 2013
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