Label: AOR Heaven
Three similar bands: Def Leppard/Vega/Bon Jovi

Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
1. Danger Zone
2. Renegade
3. You Think You’ve Got It
4. Big City Lights
5. Why Can’t You Feel My Love
6. Children Of The Lost Brigade
7. Addicted
8. Alibi
9. Lay Down Your Arms
10. Edge Of Surrender
11. Take Me Back

Nick Hogg – Bass Guitar
Alexander Strandell - Lead vocals
Tom Martin - Rhythm Guitars
James Martin - Keyboards
Dario Nikzad – Lead guitars
Mikey Wilson – Drums, additional guitar and keyboards

Real World (2018)
Open Wide (2019)

Alessandro Del Vecchio - Backing vocals

Produced by Tom & James Martin & Mikey Wilson
Mastered by Alessandro Del Vecchio
Engineered by Tom & James Martin, Mikey Wilson, Alexander Strandell, Dario Nikzad, Alessandro Del Vecchio & Paul J King
Music recorded at Strandell Studios - Sweden, Osborne Studios - UK, Ivorytears Music Works - Italy, Soundwave Studios - UK
Mixed by Mikey Wilson
Mastered at Ivorytears Music Works
Album Artwork by Nello Dell’Omo

Released 2021-07-30
Reviewed 2021-11-13


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When taking on the new album by Nitrate I come to realise that I have probably not missed anything by missing out on the previous two. There are some strong names here, Martins from Vega to name some from bands that I really like, the singer is a good one as well, but good names are nothing unless you can also make some great songs. And I am not so sure that this band do that, they make the same as everyone and if you look at that great cover and the logo I am quite sure that you will not be surprised when you hear the album.

It is typical melodic rock or AOR, nostalgic, catchy, good vocals, very polished sound, everything you expect and nothing more or less. It starts catchy and enjoyable, but it quickly feels repetitive and the fact that the originality is missing doesn’t make it more interesting. There is nothing to say about the sound, the songs are as expected, and I like the vocalist. Still, the album feels a bit too cautious, cowardly perhaps, Hogg doesn’t dare to write songs that challenge and eventually it is all just another album painted by numbers, there is no creativity or charm here. Artistry is missing and it feels like another album with tried and tested parts, not very exciting. Tried and tested is for building bridges or whatever, in music it would be preferable if the bands dared to avoid the tried and tested.

Still, AOR is almost always good, and this is no exception. It starts catchy and almost captivating, but it doesn’t take long before I grow tired with the album and start to feel like I want to do something else rather than listen to it. There are so many albums like this that they kind of blend together and it is difficult to say anything particular about it, they all sound the same – it is like children, just a slew of similitude. Nothing funny whatsoever.

If you like any AOR this will be just as good as it sounds just the same, if you look for more exciting stuff there is a high likelihood that you will be as bored as I was. It was a bit fun the first time, but not the second and even less so for each time I played it. Once again I wonder why people make albums like these, you would hardly risk much economically by trying something more exciting. But I guess it is human nature to emulate and copy, very few dare to be original and this band certainly doesn’t. Still, no matter how dull it is with another one making up the numbers, you can’t say that it is a poor album in any way, it is well made, and the songs are good as well – the problem is that it has been done to death already.