AMBROSIA – Road Island [Rock Candy remaster] (2014)
The other AMBROSIA album remastered by Rock Candy Records is “Road Island“, their fifth and final studio album until they reunited again several years after.
With the previous record, Ambrosia morphed into a hugely successful AOR unit, enjoying hit singles and mainstream media exposure very much in the breezy but precise style of Toto, Player and Steely Dan.
Of course, the icing on the cake was vocalist David Pack, a man whose voice has been compared to such masters of the art as Bobby Kimball, Michael McDonald and Steve Perry. “Road Island” saw them continuing with the commercial and catchy flavor of its predecessor, but tighten up a hard rocking approach and adding a touch of melodic progressive elements on some songs, blessed with ambitious arrangements.
Produced by James Guthrie (Pink Floyd, Queensryche), the album consisted of intense, driving hard rock (outside of the soft ballad “Feeling Alive Again” and the melodic progressive closer “Endings”).
Musically brilliant, the record contains lashings of intelligently conceived tracks, such as “For Openers (Welcome Home)” and the epic “Ice Age”. Other more traditional sounding melodic rock tracks included “Still Not Satisfied” and the commercial, melodious single “How Can You Love Me” – two of the band’s finest compositions.
After Ambrosia, David Pack pursued a solo career and produced or worked with many top artists. Pack’s 1985 terrific solo album Anywhere You Go included the song ‘Prove Me Wrong’, which also appeared on the soundtrack of the film White Nights. Joe Puerta became a founding member of Bruce Hornsby and the Range.
“Road Island” is my favorite Ambrosia record, as it includes superb melodic rock / AORish moments complemented with elaborated arrangements, all wrapped by a potent rocking sound.
The Rock Candy remaster is pristine and clear, much more defined than any “Road Island” previous CD edition.
01 – For Openers (Welcome Home)
02 – Still Not Satisfied
03 – Kid No More
04 – Feelin’ Alive Again
05 – How Can You Love Me
06 – Fool Like Me
07 – Ice Age
08 – Endings
David Pack – Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards
Joe Puerta – Acoustic Guitar, Bass, Vocals
David Cutler-Lewis – Synthesizer, Keyboards
Christopher North – Organ, Clavinet
Burleigh Drummond – Drums, Percussion, Background Vocals, Basso Profundo
Royce Jones – Background Vocals
BUY IT !