L.A Temptation

Label: Aor Heaven/Germusica
Three similar bands: Toto/Journey/Ten
Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
1. No Margin For Error
2. Above Suspicion
3. From L.A To Paris
4. A Heartbeat Away
5. Silent Victory
6. No One’s Gonna Hurt Me Anymore
7. Second Chance At Love
8. Out On The Streets
9. Hold Back The Dawn
10. The Price To Pay
11. Outside Heaven
12. When Darkness Falls

Frédéric Slama : Guitars & Keyboards

L.A Concession (2000)
Next Stop : L.A (2001)
L.A Reflection (2002)
Dreaming of L.A (2003)
Nothing but the Best (2004)
L.A Attraction (2006)
Journey to L.A (2009)
The Colors of L.A (2012)

Tommy Denander : All Instruments
Paul Sabu : Lead Vocals & All Instruments
Jerry Hludzik : Lead Vocals
James Christian : Lead Vocals
Göran Edman : Lead Vocals
Chris Ousey : Lead Vocals
Philip Bardowell : Lead Vocals
Paul Shortino : Lead Vocals
Hank Erix : Lead Vocals
Rick Riso : Lead Vocals
Joey Summer : Lead Vocals
Michael Landau : Guitars
Bruce Gaitsch : Guitars
Christian Tolle : Guitars
David Mark Pearce : Guitars
Stefano Lionetti : Guitars
Mario Percudani : Guitars
Linkan Andersson : Guitars
David Diggs : Keyboards
Alessandro Del Vecchio : Keyboards
Morris Adriaens : Keyboards
Anna Portalupi : Bass
Urban Danielsson :Bass
Martin Karlsson : Bass
Mike Baird : Drums
Pierpaolo Monti : Drums
John Barbour : Backing Vocals

Written & Produced by: Frédéric Slama

Released 23/11-2012
Reviewed 3/11-2012


This is an easy band to place genrewise I would imagine, although it is not really a band as it is a one man project of a guy called Slama from France. For this project he has gotten a very respectable guest list with a lot of prominent people from the (surprise, surprise) AOR-genre. With such people working on this album one might believe that this is going to be an impressive show of how AOR is to be made, but then again it might be a disappointment as well which is why it is always best to start listening to an album without preconceptions. I think the cover looks quite cool even though it doesn’t really make me think of L.A but it is kind of nice anyway, but then again you shouldn’t judge a book (or a CD) by its cover.

Surprisingly we are talking AOR when it comes to this album with a sound that is more or less as good as an AOR sound can be, an excellent production I would say. The music itself is classical AOR built around strong choruses and a supremely polished sound, the use of so many musicians makes for an album that is quite varied over the songs, the many different characters of the singers also adds to this sensation and I would say that this album has a lot going for it. The songs are easily accessible in style as well and also quite inoffensive in that it will probably never offend anyone and will be digested easily by everyone probably. Thing is with these meticulously produced albums that they at times also becomes quite soulless and bland in its perfection, and this is polished to perfection in many regards.

I think that you can and probably have to describe this album as perfect in many ways, but as so many other perfectly detailed and meticulously produced albums it is a bit soulless as it lacks that bit of flair that makes a good album great. I am really impressed by many things about this album but as I already alluded to it lacks that little sense of extra that one thing that makes it stand out and make you take notice, the songs just flow by and then it ends and you sort of forget it. That is a shame as I think it is really good in so many ways but they should have paid a bit less attention to detail and let loose a bit more as music after all is more about emotion than about technical perfection, but this album has it the other way around. The only time I think it picks up a bit of pace and emotion is in the fifth track when Paul Shortino (probably in his own regard the worst of all the singers on this album) sings as he has a bit of natural rawness and emotion in his voice, the other great singers like the fantastic Göran Edman or Joey Summer to name two just sound uninterested and perhaps a bit tired.

Take track seven called Second Chance at Love where Edman sings, it is a good song but everything about it feels completely without emotion, Göran sings well but bland and the guitar solo has to be the most uninterested I have ever heard and so are the drums (over the entire album). It is great songs being sort of made soulless thanks to overproducing, thus achieving a perfect and excellent sound but the songs suffer, they should have been less produced and more of an emotional show off. Or you could say more time looking for emotion and just acting out the songs without restraints than fiddling with controls in the control room, or something like that. My point is that this album is excellent in many regards but it feels sterile and to me sterile is not the same as good when it comes to music, medicine yes but music no.

In the end though this album is a good listen and it would probably be an excellent one to use as background music in a store or at a hospital where the latter would also suit the sterile nature of the production. However, despite it being that good it is not really an album I would select to listen to as it just feels like it doesn’t live up to the potential, it simply is a good album that isn’t all that it could have been.



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