HIGH ‘N DRY – Hands Off My Toy! [remastered + bonus] (2016)
Well this is an unexpected and really welcomed reissue: “Hands Off My Toy!“, the killer album by German Melodic Hard Rockers HIGH ‘N DRY, fully remastered and with 3 previously unreleased tracks as bonus.
“Hands Off My Toy!” was, without a doubt, one of the best produced indie Melodic Hard Rock releases of the ’80s. Launched through small label Bellaphon only in Germany in 1988, this great album was for years a much sought after collectors piece.
High’ N Dry style is punchy, sometimes edgy, in a similar vein of the first Jaded Heart, Treat and Dalton – perhaps due to Joe Mitz’s vocals akin Bo Lindmark of Dalton.
The kicking opener ‘Run Away’, the awesome groove of ‘The Last Time’, the classy ‘Streets Of Fire’ (where the band sounds a little like Europe), and the super ballad ‘Too Much To Lose’ in a Scandinavian mold are the first tracks on this great CD, and quality never decay.
The heavier ‘Love Reaction’ has some Treat in the riff, the melodic hard magic of ‘In The Dark’ is one of the highlights, the mid-tempo ‘Lost Souls’ brings to mind Da Vinci, while ‘Standin’ On The Frontline’ rocks again this time with an AORish feel.
I think “Hands Off My Toy!” will be a ‘new’ album for most of you, but if you were lucky enough to have the first pressing of this little gem, be prepared for this remastered reissue juicy bonus tracks.
Apparently recorded at the same era and with a good pre-production sound ‘The Light’ is a nice earthy ballad, ‘We All One’ has a melodic rock midtempo feeling, while ‘Welcome To The Show’ is a cool uptempo rocker.
As said, “Hands Off My Toy!” was one of the best sounding indie Melodic Hard Rock releases from the ’80s, skillfully produced by High ‘N Dry guitarist Deiter Kowaiewski. It puts into shame many major label releases from the era, even now almost 30 years later with this superb remastering it sounds a hell of a lot better than some ‘big name’ new albums from the genre.
Kick ass songs, tight performances and terrific production is what you will find in “Hands Off My Toy!”, a Highly Recommended baby for fans of Treat, Jaded Heart, Dalton, Europe, etc.
01 – Intro
02 – Run Away
03 – The Last Time
04 – Streets Of Fire
05 – Too Much To Lose
06 – Piece Of My Heart
07 – Love Reaction
08 – In The Dark
09 – Bad In Black
10 – Lost Souls
11 – Ain’t Gonna Take It
12 – Standin’ On The Frontline
13 – The Light
14 – We All One
15 – Welcome To The Show
Joe Mitz – vocals
Deiter Kowaiewski – guitar, keyboards
Gino Mcallef – bass, backing vocals
Mark Ulrich – drums, backing vocals
BUY IT !