ArcAngel CANNATA – Tamorok [remastered] (2018)
Regarded as one of the greatest AOR albums of all time, the first self-titled ArcAngel album showcased the talents of exquisite American musician / producer Jeff Cannata. Under the banner ArcAngel CANNATA Jeff released this album “Tamorok” at the beginning of this new century, now remastered and re-released by himself including refreshed artwork.
When it comes to the subgenre of “progressive AOR” there is one name that almost immediately springs to mind, that of musician/producer extraordinaire Jeff Cannata. The AOR classic Arc Angel from 1983 is hailed by many as one of AOR’s finest moments. Jeff’s solo albums Images of Forever (1988) and Watching the World (1993) are melodic masterpieces (sadly both are out of print). Tamorok takes material from those releases, gives them new life via remastering, adds a host of new material and ties it all up into a musical package that exceeds the term “first rate”.
Keyboard driven yet instrumentally organic, Jeff Cannata’s music is unique. When it comes to the subgenre of “progressive AOR” there is one name that almost immediately springs to mind, that of musician / producer extraordinaire Jeff Cannata.
The AOR classic ‘ArcAngel’ from 1983 is hailed by many as one of AOR’s finest moments. Jeff’s solo albums Images of Forever (1988) and Watching the World (1993) are melodic masterpieces as well. “Tamorok” takes material from those releases, gives them new life via re-recording / remastering, adds a host of new material and ties it all up into a musical package that exceeds the term “first rate”.
In fact, “Tamorok” features mostly new material, with only 3 tracks from his ‘Watching The World’ album (1993), and 3 from the pomptastic ‘Images Of Forever’ opus (1988). Only one from 1983’s ArcAngel manages to make it, and one from Cannata’s Seventies band Jasper Wrath (which featured a young, future House Of Lords James Christian on vocals). All re-worked.
The rest is new.
The production is lush throughout; the arrangements captivating. Jeff’s vocals are smooth, and the session musicians stupendous.
The House Of Lords connection is here as James Christian contributes backing vocals and guitarist Jimi Bell provides some great solos.
When I use the term progressive AOR to categorize Jeff’s work I mean that the arrangements and song structures aren’t of the stereotypical verse-chorus-verse-chorus-solo-chorus-out format, yet the hooks and choruses are there in spades.
Different enough to hold your attention, yet never so pretentious as to detract from the AORish melodies and harmonies.
Brilliant songs like title track “Tamarok”, “Prisoner in the Holy Land”, the harmony magic of “Fortune Teller” or the emotional ballad “Let It Be”, show that Jeff is in top form and he offers us a very “easy-listening” album full of great songs once more.
And listen to “Stars 2001”, the new version from the song of the 1983 album; keyboard heaven! These tracks are gonna stick in your head from the first time you will listen to this album.
“Tamarok” works as Jeff Cannata’s greatest hits package and then some; the new material integrates extremely well with the older. I cannot stress enough how excellent this album is.
All Jeff Cannata works / albums are simply outstanding, and “Tamarok” is the perfect vehicle to enjoy a compendium of the music from this legend of AOR, prog, pomp and melodic rock in general.
You’ve seen it first here, at 0dayrox
01 – Tamorok
02 – Prisoner in the Holy Land
03 – Big Life
04 – When It’s Love
05 – Watching The World
06 – Let It Be
07 – Stars
08 – Calling To You
09 – Fortune Teller
10 – Hand In Hand
11 – Sailing Ships
12 – Dangerous Game
13 – Stay
14 – Kings of Nations
Jeff Cannata: lead vocals, drums, guitars, synthesizers
Brian Wise: guitar
Kevin Nugent: lead guitar
Jay Johnson: lead and rhythm guitars
Mark Proto: guitar solos
Jimi Bell: guitar solos
David Coe: acoustic guitar
Peter Hodson: additional guitars
Scott Spray: bass
Jeff Batter, Roland Pepin: keyboards
Robert Gianotti: woodwinds, guitar solo
Jay Rowe: piano solo
Michael Soldan: backing vocals, keyboards
Barry Marshall: saxophone solo
Ron Bach: programming
James Christian: backing vocals
BUY IT !