Perris Records [Release date 18.10.19]
Perris Records have recently released the 8th instalment of their Hollywood Hairspray series and although the bands are not massively well known, there are some great tracks on here. This is an album that is certainly full of melodies, harmonies, hooks and chorus-laden rock with appearances from past and present members of Journey, Tyketto, Extreme, Firehouse and Dangerous Toys amongst the tracks on offer.
Of the 14 tracks on the album, my favourite has to be Loud N’ Nasty’s “Stand Strong” which has a Ratt like feel to it. Morano’s “After The Love” has some solid 80’s AOR style to it and in some ways reminds me late 80’s/early 90’s Europe, as does 99 Crimes’ “Rumor” (although heavier on the rock more than the AOR side). Bad Boy Eddy’s “My Best Friend” is a little too sugary for me, whilst Walker’s “Time To Party” is reminiscent of “Slave To The Grind” era Skid Row.
One of the issues I do have with this compilation is the variance in the sound quality on some of the tracks included. AOR’s “The Smartest Girl In LA” is a good example of this as it is the first dip in sound quality, although the guitar work more than makes up for this, Mercy’s “Jet Black Romance” also suffers from a muddier sound. There are also a couple of tracks that are of demo quality (NiteRain’s”Rise Up” and Affaire’s “Highway Affair”) but are good songs and I would have like them to have been a bit better remastered.
Kill City Kills’ “Wild Brigade” has a nice sleazy edge to it but special mention has to be made of Notorious’ “Notorious” as it literally sounds like The Scorpions’ Klaus Meine singing over Motley Crue’s “Looks That Kill”, make of it what you will.
Overall, “Hollywood Hairspray Vol. 8” is a good compilation, easy to listen to, and has made me want to look out its 7 earlier predecessors. ****
Review by Nikk Gunns
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