ROBBY VALENTINE – ST [Japan HR/HM 1000 reissue series] (2018) 0dayrox exclusive
Universal Music Japan has started this year a curious but more than welcomed campaign: the reissue of long time out of print albums from their catalog titled ‘HR/HM 1000‘, that meaning Hard Rock / Heavy Metal at the price of 1000 Yen = about 9,5 USD.
And it’s curious because these series focus on the ‘commercially less successful’ albums from each band, which, anyway, were long time out of print.
It’s not the case with ROBBY VALENTINE self-titled debut “Robby Valentine“, a successful album when released (especially in Japan and Europe) yet not easy to find at decent price.
“Robby Valentine”, in short, is a must have CD.
Having left awesome AOR / melodic hard rock outfit Zinatra, Robby put forward his solo career in 1991.
The “Robby Valentine” debut would effectively establish Robby’s unique brand of adult oriented rock which is often characterized as technical melodic rock or progressive AOR.
In fact, most songs on this 1992 debut could be regarded both as songs and musical pieces.
Valentine opens on the ambitious “The magic breeze”, a landmark in orchestral adult oriented rock, totally indicative of the songwriter’s musical ability and artistic orientation.
“One day” is a melodic rock classic tune in book, and there’s of course the Queen-esque “The Gift of life”, a trademark in this Dutch musician.
Form there onwards you get the dramatic “Heaven is calling”, the potential mega-hit uber catchy “Broken Dreams”, and the stimulating “Heaven is calling”, another melodic rock / AOR gem.
And yes, we have here the superb ballad “Over and over again”, Robby’s hit with its classy Scandinavian feel.
A great part of the album’s appeal is to be attributed to the fact that all instruments shine on each and every arrangement, with guitars, bass and drums being crucial elements to the end result – even though the overall songwriting is based on keyboards.
This reissue is not remastered, but this Japanese 2018 release sounds fantastic. It may be the new digital transfer technique – which augment the signal / Dynamic Range – so believe me, it’s incredibly clear and powerful. This really improves all the previous versions of this terrific album.
Additionally, you have the original 2 Japanese bonus tracks, and at the price of $10, this is a mandatory purchase.
“Robby Valentine” is a melodic rock / AOR diamond, the Dutch’s masterpiece and a must have in your collection.
You’ve seen it first here, at 0dayrox
Universal Music Japan ～ 【UICY-78676】
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01 – The Magic Breeze
02 – Broken Dreams
03 – Live Your Life
04 – One Day
05 – The Gift Of Life
06 – Over And Over Again
07 – Heaven Is Callin’
08 – I’m Searchin’
09 – Here, There And Everywhere
10 – Angel
11 – Love Is Alive
12 – I Believe In You
13 – Love Takes Me Higher
JAPANESE BONUS TRACKS:
14 – I Can’t Stay Another Day Without You
15 – Valentine’s Overture Part I
Robby Valentine – Lead vocals, grand-piano, synths, guitar
Arthur Polini – bass, background vocals
Rob Winter – lead guitar
Hans Eijkenaar – drums
John Ewbank – add. keyboards
BUY IT !