Translation courtesy of Google translate
AOR is dead! They say not if Tokyo Storm, a new Midlands based rock quartet have got anything to say about it. I say, don't get me wrong here, its not reinventing the wheel or it isn't anything you've heard before; it is however like an old pair of slippers - familiar, comforting to listen to and dare I say it warming for the soul.
The opening track sets the tone for the album and as titled even for a jaded old Melodic rock listener like myself leaves me in an 'Optimistic State Of Mind', (see what I did there). A delightful mixture of mid paced rockers, the likes of 'Is This Love' with a great vocal performance from Ben Green, or the tasteful power ballad 'Stormy Nights' (the woman who slept with Donald Trump) with some nifty fretwork from guitarist Joe Bartnicki.
The rhythm section of Jason Edwards and Bob Peach keep the whole record positively bouncing along. A personal favorite is the delightful 'Silent Obsession'. Comparisons I'll leave to others, but what I will say is that Tokyo Storm have a classic Brit AOR sound think along the lines of Lost Weekend or Iconic Eye for example, all the songs are self penned originals, and the craftsmanship for a new band is top notch. The production is quality, leaving the listener to enjoy a warm rich sound that suits the Melodic fare on offer.
However I offer a word of warning....avoid the last track the 11 minute instrumental 'Signals'. I can only assume writers block had set in by this point and honestly it's a damn shame such a great album should end in this way. The track is about as welcome as a fart in a lift ....Don't let that however put you off what is a nice addition to the UK ranks of AOR/ Melodic rock bands .
Link to chesyrockreviews,com Review
Congratulations on your album,
it's a quality product and you all should be proud of it. For those of a certain age, the very mention of AOR (Adult Oriented Rock) brings back memories of 1980s MTV Rock Videos featuring a skinny, spandex-clad guitar hero atop a butte in Monument Valley at sunset, waist-length hair flowing in the wind as a helicopter appears behind him (there was always a helicopter in MTV rock videos). The 1980s was its heyday and AOR bands such as Toto, Foreigner, Journey, Asia and Yes (the Trevor Horn version) ruled the airwaves and TV screens until, inevitably, music trends changed and AOR sank without a trace. Well now it's back. Tokyo Storm are a four-piece band from the Midlands, who are making waves on the Worcestershire music scene with their debut album, 'Optimistic State Of Mind', a collection of ten original songs with an even spread of driving rock songs and power ballads that offers something for everyone. The album opens with the title track, a blistering, supercharged V8 engine of a song, which sets the tone for all that is to come, and, in this reviewer's opinion, is good enough to stand alongside any AOR classic from yesteryear. Releasing a debut album of original AOR material is a gutsy move, but it's clear that OSOM is very well-produced. Each of the ten songs is crafted well and delivered impeccably. The standard of songwriting, musicianship, and production has resulted in a polished and professional-sounding debut collection, of which the band ought to be proud. Tokyo Storm are here to stay and have the chops to go on to bigger and better things. Can they resurrect AOR? With an optimistic state of mind, I rather think they can.
The title says it all. Once you've listened to the debut album from new Midlands based rock quartet Tokyo Storm, you will enter into an "Optimistic State Of Mind" thanx to an impressive array of well crafted songs underpinned by the guitar craft of Joe Bartnicki, top class vocalist Ben Green, ace drummer Bob Peach and bassist Jason Edwards, their latest recruit. Admirers of the rockier edge of ELO, Paul Rodgers/Free, Journey, Whitesnake, Foreigner, Yes, Kansas and those classic American rock bands we all know and love will find "Optimistic State Of Mind" an approachable and familiar album blended with instantly likeable guitar licks, searching lyrics with meaning and the heartbeat of superb percussion. If the title track doesn't grab your attention, then the moody "Silent Obsession" and "Lady Darkness" will if not the jealousy tinged "Is This Love", the driving anthem that is "Tune" or elevated ballad "Stormy Night". "Kill The Machines" is a call to arms hard to ignore too. The song that makes this album and closes it is my personal fave, the wonderful eleven minute instrumental piece entitled "Signals". With elements of Pink Floyd and some superlative musicianship on display, it provides balance and a fitting album closer leaving the listener with a knowing smile that they have just experienced a stunning rock album from start to finish. Tokyo Storm are looking for a label to provide a platform for their music. The likes of Frontiers, SPV, Angel Air and Cherry Red would do well to sit up and take notice. A Tokyo Storm is coming! ____ Trax: "Optimistic State Of Mind" ~ "Is This Love" ~ "Tune" ~ "Stormy Night" ~ "Kill The Machines" ~ "Silent Obsession" ~ "Fire In Your Eyes" ~ "Lady Darkness" ~ "Summer Feeling" ~ "Signals" Tokyo Storm are: Ben Green (Vocals) + Bob Peach (Drums, Percussion) + Joe Bartnicki (Guitars, Bass, Keyboards) + Jason Edwards (Bass, Vocals)..