NITRATE – Real World [2020 reissue]
British melodic rockers NITRATE may be a new name, but you’ll recognise some of the faces; guitarist Rob Wylde (Midnite City, Tigertailz), lead vocalist Joss Mennen (Zinatra, Mennen) and Pete Newdeck (Midnite City, Eden’s Curse, Blood Red Saints, Newman).
The group already released two awesome albums of classy stuff mastered by Harem Scarem’s Harry Hess, plenty of hooks and catchy songwriting.
Now they are reissuing their debut album “Real World” because it’s out of print – additionally their Japanese publishing label broke up – and at the beginning of next year it will be available on vinyl LP as well.
Nitrate are inspired by uptempo ’80s melodic rock and they certainly hit the spot on ‘Crazy Like You’ and ‘Hot Summer Nights’, both with a strong classic US melodic rock influence in their sound and arrangements.
‘I’ll Be There’ you could imagine as part of a soundtrack film from the era with its AOR-tastic chorus and another impressive guitar solo. Just the sort of song the late, great Jimi Jamison would have loved to sing I am sure.
However, Nitrate are cleverly enough to mix the American style of the genre with classy European AOR as well.
Having Joss Mennen at the mic (an underrated vocalist for sure), the resemblance of Zinatra is inevitable, especially their finest hour when they included Robby Valentine in the band. Just check ‘Attraction’… superb atmospheres.
The ballad ‘Breathe’ is suitably grandiose complete with layers of backing vocals and piano. The title track has a snippet of a riff from UFO’s ‘Rock Bottom’, whilst opener ‘Waiting On You’ features some great ’80s compressed / Simmons electronic drumming (love it), coupled with snazzy keyboard riffs.
Both are songs that once you have heard them you won’t stop humming and singing along with.
Back to the American influences we have the catchy ‘Crank Up The Weekend’, where Nitrate adds a touch of ’80s glam for a party rocker full of energy and feel-good vibe.
Other number to mention is the cracking melodic rock bounce of ‘Dangerous’, and you can hear the guys have nailed the ’80s sound in spades.
Nitrate mix the best of the ’80s melodic rock / AOR sounds from both sides of the ocean, in a really refreshing way avoiding common arrangements or repetitive chords.
”Real World” is a terrific collection of songs, an ’80s flavored melodic rock treat.
01. Waiting on You
05. Hot Summer Nights
06. Crank Up the Weekend
07. Only You
08. Real World
11. I’ll Be There
All I Need (original Japan Bonus Track)
Joss Mennen – lead and backing vocals
Nick Hogg – guitars, keyboards
Rob Wylde – guitar, bass, backing vocals
Pete Newdeck – drums, backing vocals