Dukes of the Orient album released

Apparently this album has been in the works for quite a while, but I wasn’t aware of it until recently. The background and history behind the album is closely related the band name. Take a moment to think about it and you might figure it out. The Dukes of the Orient refers to Asia. The band is a collaboration between former Asia vocalist John Payne and Lana Lane’s husband Erik Norlander.

As I write this I have only listened to the first three songs, but I’m impressed enough to wake from my Mood Swings slumber and actually write a post after several months of inactivity. Yes, it sounds a lot like Payne era Asia. No bad thing in my book, as Aria is one of my favourite albums, a great combination of pomp and AOR.


R.I.P. Malcolm Young

Malcolm Young, rhythm guitarist with AC DC, has died from dementia aged 64. Co-writer, along with his brother Angus, of some of the most iconic songs in hard rock, he was a key element in forging their trademark sound. Our prayers and thoughts are with Angus and the Young family.

Black Paisley– Late Bloomer Review

Black Paisley - Late Bloomer cover


So the benefit of bad weather here in Northern Ireland is that I get to catch up on music that I wouldn’t normally get the chance to listen to.

First up is Black Paisley who I have the admit based in their name alone I might have skipped over, assuming the music on offer was of a heavier variety. The press release lets me know that the band are actually named after Ritchie Sambora’s Fender signature guitars. The band morphed out of a covers band called ‘StephMetal’ and started recording back in 2014.

That reference to Ritchie Sambora gives a clue to the style of the music on display. Opening song “Run Run Run” has a hint of Little Caesar about it. “Way To Something” slows matters down a tad and has a real mellow smooth effortless vibe to it that reminds me of Bob Seger. These Swedes really sound like they hail from The States.

The album is a good mix of ballads, mid-tempo and faster paced tracks with a radio friendly feel with ballad “Coming Home” finishing it off in fine form. From the press release it looks like at least some versions of the album have couple of bonus tracks “Alone” and “Step Back”.

Watch “THRESHOLD – Stars And Satellites (OFFICIAL LYRIC VIDEO)” on YouTube

Threshold have a new album out and its a monster double album. It is a concept album, but despite the title, isn’t about hobbits. The album sees the return of Glynn Morgan who was last in the band circa 1993/1994. Sift through my Spotify playlists and a few Threshold albums will appear, but I don’t remember that listening to them that much. I have only listened to a few songs so far, but it sounds good. The song in the video I linked to has a radio friendly quality to the chorus. However, with several lengthy numbers and something like 1 hr 20 mins of music, it seems like more of an album for existing fans rather for those just dipping their toes into Threshold waters.

Some YouTube Surfing

I was sitting yesterday morning surfing through my YouTube feed and bookmarked the following:

Sons Of Apollo

An all star line-up featuring PORTNOY, SHEEHAN, BUMBLEFOOT, SOTO, SHERINIAN. One of my favourite singers fronting a band that sounds like early Dream Theater, should be a dream come true? I’ve listened to this a couple of times and I’m not sure its working for me. Maybe when I listen to the whole album it will click.


Of course, I’m a sucker for pure AOR and Boulevard are one of those bands that I always had on my list to check out, but never did. I guess I can now.

Robin Beck

Still love the voice, but this song isn’t that special.

Dan Reed Network

A little funk AOR is always welcome.

Eden’s Curse

Not sure why, but it looks like Eden’s Curse have re-recorded their debut album.


I was reading about these guys in the latest edition of Powerplay magazine. Always welcome in small bursts.

Exit Eden

Whilst the idea seems great, I guess it all depends on how much you like your pop songs messed with, assuming you are familiar with them in the first place!

Crazy Lixx

A bit of cheese is welcome.


Quite a few weeks after Brett Richey got in touch to say that they have a new album out, I finally got a chance to check it out.

Dream Theater expand into games

Dream Theater have created a video game called “The Astonishing” for PC, Mac, Android and iOS. The guys are obviously taking lessons from Kiss in exploring all mechanising opportunities!

Rock Candy Releases


Rock Candy latest releases will include the following:

  • Warrant – Cherry Pie
  • Warrant – Dirty Rotten Filthy Stinking Rich
  • Mother’s Finest – Iron Age
  • Frank Marino & Mahogany Rush – Live
  • Frank Marino – What’s Next
  • Frank Marino – The Power of Rock and Roll
  • Frank Marino – Juggernaut