Label: Mascot Records/Mascot Label Group
Three similar bands: Whitesnake/Rainbow/Scorpions

Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
1. Shadows Of The Night
2. Freight Train
3. Hell And High Water
4. Let It Rain
5. Ride Like The Wind
6. Shout
7. Shitstorm
8. Light Up The Sky
9. Burning Heart 2020
10. Skyfall

Adrian Vandenberg - guitar
Ronnie Romero - vocals
Koen Herfst - drums
Randy van der Elsen - bass

Vandenberg (1982)
Heading for a Storm (1983)
Alibi (1985)


Produced by Bob Marlette

Released 2020-05-29
Reviewed 2020-05-13


mascot label group

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2020 is the new album by Vandenberg, the first album by Adrian and co for 35 years. The band was successful in the early eighties with three studio albums and some decent list success, one of those successes Burning Heart is rerecorded for this album along with nine new tracks. The band is also new aside from Adrian, with singer Ronnie Romero known from singing with Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow as the most obvious addition. The cover looks pretty average and the title 2020 doesn’t really feel very exciting, but that doesn’t mean the music isn’t exciting.

It is classic hard rock, styled like in the eighties, probably a lot like the band sounded back in the day but with fresher production. Romero has a great classic rock voice with strong emotional resonance giving the songs energy and life, and that is a very good aspect of this album. Otherwise it doesn’t really offer anything that feels fresh or exciting; creatively it is a bit bland. The variation is okay, one of the songs is a rerecorded classic but all of them sound like they could have been rerecorded. The playing time is sensible, the variation is more or less as you can expect from an album of this variety. There are no surprises here.

I have to say that I find myself somewhat ambivalent here, I think the album is very boring from the creative standpoint, but the songs have such good energy and life so you just have to like them. I would say that it is a pretty good album overall, the creative side is the let-down, but the songs are good and it is quite likeable. I would not be surprised if this album does quite well despite the lack of fresh ideas.

If you like the eighties and the hard rock of that era, then you should look at this one as it will cater to what you like. Fans of Whitesnake and their peers will be most impressed, probably other rockers as well. There is probably some hit potential here as well even though the album isn’t particularly memorable. If you ask me the answer is probably that it wasn’t really necessary to revive Vandenberg as an album releasing band after all this time, but the answer isn’t as clear cut as the first impression would suggest. It is probably worth checking out 2020.