Best AOR album 2017, #2 : WALK ON FIRE – Mind Over Matter (2017)
End of the year / beginning of 2018, it’s time to recap about the best 2017 releases, by category.
We love WALK ON FIRE… that’s it.
I’ve been waiting for this many, many years… and Escape Music finally put out in 2017 the second, never released WALK ON FIRE album titled “Mind Over Matter“.
After their awesome first album Walk On Fire recorded songs – in between touring – for their second album, but in the wake of grunge it never was released. Now, some 25 years on, Escape Music has discovered these 24 track analog recordings and delivers Walk On Fire’s long belated second album, “Mind Over Matter”.
And I love it.
Founded by keyboardist Dave Cairns, Walk On Fire featured the vocals of Alan King, guitars of Mike Caswell, Trevor Thornton (ex-Asia) on drums and Phil Williams on bass, though they employed a variety of session musicians in the studio.
They had two moderated single hits with ‘Blind Faith’ and ‘Wastelands’, and toured all over the world with some heavyweights of the day including Foreigner, The Dan Reed Network, Ratt, etc.
“Mind Over Matter” follows the path of Walk On Fire’s first album, that being a pristine, elegant AOR sound and excellent arrangements / musicianship. Check the gorgeous ‘The Price Of Love’, ‘Pleasure Of Pain’, and the very catchy ‘Long Live Love’, which has a fine groove from a tasty pumping bass line and a chorus to die for.
Providing balance with a more melodic rock feeling and stronger guitars (akin Giant’s Dann Huff) songs such as the punchy title track ‘Mind Over Matter’, ‘Big Gun’, the majestic ‘Bad Attitude’ and ‘Save Your Lies’ have a rocking output thanks to sharper riffs and, in the case of the latter two, a heavier bottom end.
Why “Mind Over Matter” remained shelved for more than 25 years it’s a crime. The quality of this material is just wonderful. It’s certainly not bogged down and tarred with the same brush that saturates today’s production methods.
If there is one apparent thing, Dave Cairns obviously knew what he was doing in the studio, and I kinda miss this late ’80s early ’90s production standard. Coupled with Alan King’s killer voice, this is the style of AOR that is missing in today’s market.
Do yourself a favor and buy a physical CD of this album.
It’s a future classic, and A MUST HAVE
01. Mind over Matter
02. Spinning Wheel
03. Pleasure of Pain
04. Reign Down
05. Long Live Love
06. Save Your Lies (We’ve Had Enough)
08. Bad Attitude
10. Big Gun
11. The Price of Love
12. Drag Me Down
13. Blood Is the Colour
Alan King: All vocals
Dave Cairns: Keyboards, Guitars
Mike Casswell (ex Brian May): Guitars
Phil Williams (ex Spandau Ballet): Bass
Trevor Thornton (ex Asia): Drums
BUY IT !: