TYCOON – Turn Out The Lights [remastered reissue 2016]
One band you need to discover, you, AOR fan, is the quite unknown and often ignored TYCOON, one of the more elaborated acts in the genre from the early ’80s. Their excellent album “Turn Out The Lights” has been reissued this year using the last remaster and believe me, it deserves a place in your collection.
Tycoon was a New York based band formed by vocalist Norman Mershon and multi-instrumentalist Mark Kreider. The duo recruited some well known session musicians and released a self titled album in the late ’70s which made a modest hit in the charts.
Two years after, the group took a completely different approach to their second effort “Turn Out The Lights”: AOR was starting to rule the airwaves.
With the polished and expert production of Vini Poncia (Adrenalin, Kiss) and the always effective guitars by Bobby Messano (Joe Lynn Turner, Fiona, Martee LeBow, Franke And The Knockouts), Mershon delivers all his vocal abilities and tasteful tone on every track.
‘One More Try’ is a moody syncopated smooth, melodious tune, ‘Walkin’ The Line’ is superb pure classy AOR heaven in the vein of Balance, while ‘Hang On In’ is a totally Eighties delineated cut where you can hear the typically “Poncia touch”.
The lovely ‘Love You Till It Hurts’ feels as if should have been recorded by TOTO, one of the highlights here. Then ‘Let It Down’ is a sweet commercial ballad akin REO Speedwagon, ‘This Island Earth’ features a curious arrangement during the verses and ‘C’mon Over’ is simple but darn catchy.
Title track ‘Turn Out The Lights’ has a candy-floss piano much in the style of TOTO’s Hold The Line, something like Little River Band was doing at the time as well.
Regarded as a true and obscure AOR gem by many fans, Tycoon’s “Turn Out The Lights” is criminally ignored on almost every Classic AOR list. Maybe it does not reach the cult status, but it’s a great record that failed to sold well and rank in the charts due to the label lack of promotion.
This reissue includes 2 extra tracks, ‘Yes Men’ and ‘Over My Head’, both originally single B-sides.
A really good slice of pure ’80s AOR.
01 – This Island Earth
02 – One More Try
03 – Turn Out the Lights
04 – Walkin’ the Line
05 – Let It Down
06 – Hang on In
07 – Can’t Take That Away
08 – Love You Till It Hurts
09 – C’mon Over
10 – Call the Police
11 – Yes Men
12 – Over My Head
Norman Mershon – vocals
Mark Kreider – bass, vocals
Bobby Messano – guitars, vocals
Jon Gordon – guitars, vocals
Keith Taylor, Michael Fonfara – keyboards
Mark Rivera – sax, vocals
Mike Braun – drums
BUY IT !