GRAHAM BONNET – Reel To Real – The Archives [3-CD Unreleased Remastered Box Set]
“Reel To Real – The Archives” is the just released Cherry Ref / Hear No Evil Records 3-CD collection of unreleased GRAHAM BONNET songs, including studio recordings and live, all remastered.
Although this new collection of unreleased recordings only covers a small part of the Graham Bonnet story, few frontmen can claim to have had such a lengthy and diverse journey.
Achieving what was possibly his greatest success in 1979 with Rainbow’s “Down To Earth”, worldwide hits followed with the singles ‘All Night Long’ and ‘Since You Been Gone’.
Further solo success beckoned with the song ‘Night Games’ from the “Line-Up” album in 1981, before Graham briefly joined The Michael Schenker Group for 1982’s “Assault Attack”.
Graham then formed Alcatrazz with a then little known Swedish guitarist called Yngwie J. Malmsteen, who would be replaced by another legendary axe-slinger, Steve Vai, before the singer hooked up with Chris Impellitteri and the band Impellitteri, Graham has subsequently recorded with Forcefield, Japan’s Anthem, the Taz Taylor Band and Blackthorne with Bob Kulick.
Disc 1 “Reel to Real: The Archives 1987-1992” focuses on a short, five year period, when the singer was partly based in Australia.
Kicking off with three tracks recorded in Los Angeles in 1987, ‘Tonite I Fly’, ‘Reel To Real’ and ‘The Dancer’, they feature Alcatrazz guitarist Danny Johnson.
‘Whiplash’, ‘Long Time Gone’, covers of ‘Summer In The City’ and ‘River Deep – Mountain High’ plus ‘Midnight Crossing’ were recorded in Adelaide, Australia in 1989 during the period that Graham had relocated down under.
The first disc is completed by ‘Double Cross My Heart’, ‘Hearts Under Fire’ and ‘Dead Man Walking’.
Before finding worldwide fame with Rainbow in 1979, Graham had enjoyed some of his biggest solo successes in Australia, which would explain the inclusion of covers of Bob Dylan’s ‘It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue’, and the aforementioned Bee Gees’ disco staple ‘Warm Ride’ on the two 1989 solo concerts featured on discs 2 and 3, recorded in Melbourne and Adelaide respectively.
Although slightly incongruous amongst the hard rock of Rainbow, MSG and Alcatrazz, the songs actually sit comfortably among Graham’s solo versions of ‘All Night Long’, ‘Since You Been Gone’, ‘Desert Song’ and ‘Island In The Sun’.
Solo tracks such as Russ Ballard’s ‘S.O.S.’ are included as well as Alcatrazz’s ‘God Blessed Video’, anti-drink-driving anthem ‘Will You Be Home Tonight’, plus the aforementioned covers of Ike & Tina’s ‘River Deep – Mountain High’ and the Lovin’ Spoonful’s ‘Summer In The City’.
While the bonus live discs 2 / 3 are mostly for rabid fans and collectors (sound quality is just OK) the real find are the unreleased studio recordings on Disc 1.
All these are truly good songs, professionally taped, guitar driven tunes with Bonnet raspy vocals in full form.
Very good stuff that finally see the light of day.
Disc 1: Reel To Real [Unreleased Studio Recordings]
1. Tonite I Fly (1987)
2. Reel to Real (1987)
3. The Dancer (1987)
4. Whiplash (1989)
5. Long Time Gone (1989)
6. Summer in the City (1989)
7. River Deep – Mountain High (1989)
8. Midnight Crossing (1989)
9. Rider (1989)
10. Double Cross My Heart (1992)
11. Hearts Under Fire (1992)
12. Dead Man Walking (2008)
(1-3 recorded in LA, USA 1987 / 4-9 recorded in Australia 1989)
Disc 2: Live in Melbourne February 24th 1989)
1. God Blessed Video
2. Island in the Sun
4. Will You Be Home Tonight
5. It’s All Over Now Baby Blue
6. Only One Woman
7. Desert Song
8. River Deep – Mountain High
9. Summer in the City
10. Since You Been Gone
11. Drum Solo
12. Lost in Hollywood
14. All Night Long
15. Warm Ride
Disc 3: Live at in Adelaide March 26th 1989
1. Intro: Night of a Shooting Star
2. God Blessed Video
3. Island in the Sun
5. Will You Be Home Tonight
6. It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue
7. Only One Woman
8. Desert Song
9. River Deep, Mountain High
10. Summer in the City
11. Since You Been Gone
12. Drum Solo
13. Lost in Hollywood
14. All Night Long
15. Warm Ride
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