CD Reviews

Jon Stevens - 'Starlight' Hot

Added by James Gaden     August 28, 2017    
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The album spans Classic Rock, Blues, Soul and Contemporary Pop in one cohesive package.

Starting out as a successful teen Pop singer in New Zealand, Jon Stevens moved to Australia and ended up joining guitarist Stuart Fraser in a band that would ultimately become Noiseworks, a Rock group that released three albums, all of which made the Australian Top Ten and went platinum. Stevens would then land the role of Judas opposite John Farnham’s Jesus in the Australian arena tour version of ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’.

Stevens also embarked on a solo career, releasing the excellent ‘Are U Satisfied’, co-writing the Sydney Olympics theme ‘Carry The Flame’ and fronting INXS for three years after Michael Hutchence died.

UK fans are likely to have come across him as the co-founder and original singer of The Dead Daisies. He co-wrote and sang on their debut album and following EP ‘Face I Love’ before returning to his solo work, releasing several more impressive records. That all brings us to his tenth solo effort ‘Starlight’. There’s a big buzz about this album, primarily due to the fact it was written entirely by Stevens and Eurythmics star Dave Stewart – who also produced – with the partnership resulting in arguably Stevens best work to date.

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‘Hold On’ is an explosive start (with a brilliant accompanying video on YouTube), while the Bluesy ‘Oh Lord’ is exceedingly memorable. The catchy ‘Feel Like Letting Go’ and the powerhouse ‘Scars’ are both top drawer with the synth-laden groove of ‘F.U.C’ providing a clever change of pace. Stevens and Stewart also attracted some big-name guests with Richie Sambora and Orianthi appearing on the Classic Rocker ‘Devil In Her Heart’ and none other than Ringo Starr providing drums on ‘One Way Street’. There’s an effective duet with Vanessa Amorosi on ‘Something ‘Bout You’ and the ZZ Top vibe of ‘What Makes You Happy’ is fantastic.

As you hear the stunning title track, you realise the album spans Classic Rock, Blues, Soul and Contemporary Pop in one cohesive package. The only possible point of contention for some would be the Rap segment on closer ‘All About The People’, but it is performed by Stevens son (Levi Jay) so the nepotism can be excused! With impressive videos and a phenomenal recent five date UK tour, there’s a push for ‘Starlight’ to break through here. As a fan for well over a decade, I’d advise you to grab a copy and find out what you’ve been missing all these years.

James Gaden

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