Fireworks

Stan Bush - 'Stan Bush & Barrage' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/c6/ab/8d/StanBushBarrage-27-1383321190.jpg Hot

Added by James Gaden     November 01, 2013    
 
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Easily deserving of the ‘classic’ tag often assigned to it.

After one album as guitarist with Colorado hard rockers Boulder in 1979 (also featuring Axe/Frank Zappa singer Bob Harris), and a classy but largely ignored solo debut four years later, singer/songwriter Stan Bush re-launched his career in a borrowed pink leather jacket with this 1987 ‘band’ album, on the back of two tunes featured in the animated 1986 film Transformers – The Movie. Easily deserving of the ‘classic’ tag often assigned to it, ‘Stan Bush & Barrage’ is notable for many reasons; the bombastic hi-tech AOR, Bush’s superb songwriting and the presence of Mr Big drummer Pat Torpey and Dave Lee Roth guitarist Rocket Richotte being just some of them.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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Blessed with lyrical nous, a keen understanding of dynamics and a voice with just the right combination of tunefulness and raw urgency, Bush roars his way through consummate rockers ‘Temptation’, ‘Primitive Lover’, ‘Take It Like A Man’ and the brilliant ‘Gates Of Paradise’ in a way that should have seen his star rise alongside the likes of Rick Springfield and Bryan Adams. On the other side of the coin, ‘Love Don’t Lie’ was a ballad so good it was chosen by Gene Simmons for House Of Lords’ debut the following year, whilst the catchy ‘Heart Vs Head’ appeared on the soundtrack to the frankly awful film The Wraith (great soundtrack though!) and the strident ‘Crank That Radio’ should have become an 80s staple on US airwaves. The uplifting Transformers song ‘The Touch’ would become his calling card, and over twenty-five years later it’s still impossible not to punch the air when the drums come in after the gentle intro, it’s probably the highlight but there’s really not a duffer in sight.

If the album has one fault it’s that the production of Richie Wise, whilst crystal clear and powerful, is also perhaps a little mechanical, with a typical 80s drum sound and keys that immediately date it. However, a great album is a great album whichever way you slice it and this is the most powerful version of ‘Stan Bush & Barrage’ on the market.

Phil Ashcroft

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