HARTMANN – Shadows & Silhouettes (Pride & Joy reissue 2019 + Bonus Track)
Recently mostly known as being part of Avantasia, talented singer and guitarist Oliver Hartmann also has a solo career having released one of the best Melodic Hard Rock / AOR debut albums from the past decade.
“Shadows & Silhouettes” is his fifth release under the HARTMANN banner (co-produced again by Avantasia’s mastermind Sascha Paeth) now recently reissued by the band’s new label Pride & Joy.
As in the previous Hartmann album, the German continues to deliver his well-crafted hard rockin’ stuff with driven guitars, some memorable choruses and a ‘modern’ melodic rock sound that will please all the band’s earlier fans but also every fan of the ‘softer’ melodic rock scene.
“Irresistible” begins with in a similar way to Joey Tempest’s solo effort Forgiven and is not dissimilar in the laid back vibe. This is followed by “High on You” which isn’t a Survivor cover but is an equally upbeat, classy piece of melodic rock – again with a pretty laid back atmosphere.
One of the vital parts of the mix is Hartmann’s voice which is never less than commanding as on the first single “When Your Mama Was a Hippie” which is very poppy indeed.
We have a classy ballad in “Jaded Heart” (very ‘German in terms of sound), and then the excellent “Amazing”.
The rest of the tracks are pretty acoustically based midtempo tunes. We have two very nice acoustic, mid-tempo tunes (Harmann is an specialist in this matter) on “Still The Same” and “The Letting Go” which show the emotional side of Hartmann.
Also worth the reissue of the album the extra track “Soul Asylum”.
Oliver Hartmann is a talented, complete musician and never fails to deliver. “Shadows And Silhouettes” is a very enjoyable record with some superb tunes mixed with a more laid-back side.
His band feels very tight, strong, and Sascha Paeth provides a pristine sound via his technical expertise production.
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01 – Irresistible
02 – High on You
03 – Glow
04 – When Your Mama Was a Hippie
05 – Jaded Heart
06 – Amazing
07 – Still the Same
08 – I Would Murder for You
09 – The Letting Go
10 – Too Good to Be True
11 – Shadow in My Eyes
12 – Last Goodbye
13 – Shadows (Hidden Track)
REISSUE BONUS TRACK:
14 – Soul Asylum
Oliver Hartmann (guitar, vocals)
Mario Reck (guitar)
Armin Donderer (bass)
Markus Kullmann (drums)
Jimmy Kresic (keyboards)
Irena Morisáková, Adéla Pecková (strings)