Rob Moratti

Label: AOR Heaven
Three similar bands: Radioactive/Toto/Foreigner

Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
1. I’m Falling
2. Rise Above
3. What Have We Become
4. Remember
5. Where Do We Go From Here
6. Drifting Away
7. Break The Chains
8. Alone Anymore
9. Bullet Proof Alibi
10. All I’m Living For
11. Picking Up The Pieces
12. Stay Away

Rob Moratti - vocals

Desolation (1995)
Legends of Tomorrow (1997)
Victory (2011)
Transcendent (2016)
Renaissance (2019)

Torben Enevoldsen - guitar & keyboards
Joel Hoekstra - guitar
Ian Crichton - guitar
Tony Franklin - bass
Stu Reid - drums
Ulrick Lönnqvist
Pete Alpenborg
Felix Borg
Ken Sandin

Produced by Rob Moratti
Mixed by Rob Moratti and Torben Enevoldsen
Mastered by Rob Moratti

Released 2020-10-30
Reviewed 2020-11-02

aor heaven

läs på svenska

Rob Moratti has been liked by the Hallowed reviewers for the previous releases that we have written about, we did an interview with him and everything about the last years Renaissance that was awarded a positive review. Now comes Paragon and once again the connection with Saga takes up prominent space in the press material, and I cannot help but wonder when this will be a parenthesis rather than an important part of his press in relation to new albums. I wonder this because that connection is quite irrelevant considering that at least the last two Moratti albums are pretty far from Saga in terms of style.

It is AOR or melodic rock/hardrock that is the thing for Moratti, he has a strong vocal presence and good range in his voice – he sings really well. The sound is good with power and energy, it is a more interesting production that some of the bland and overproduced album we often hear in this genre. But in terms of creativity it doesn’t really stand out, there are no surprises here and the selection of songs is fairly typical of the AOR style that Moratti employs – if you know his previous stuff you will not be surprised by this album as it is in the same style.

Paragon is a good album; the songs are good and the vocal performance really strong. Although, while the vocals are good, they are also a little bit bland and gives me an almost soulless impression. It is a bit like those paint-by-numbers things, where Moratti just paints the suggested colours in the right fields, there are nothing on this album that calls for pause or anything. It is a solid piece of craftsmanship with solid songs and performances, written to cater to the targeted audience and they will probably buy it as well, but looking at it in the longer perspective it is a pretty forgettable release. I think Renaissance was better, and it wasn’t the most memorable album either, but the songs are not as good on this album and that increases the risk of quickly forgetting about it.

If you like Moratti’s previous albums of the AOR genre there is a good chance that you will like this one as well. It is a strong album, Moratti showcases his vocal range and the songs are catchy enough for a moment of entertainment.