AOR Heaven [Release date 28.05.21]
Michael Fury are a band, as opposed to a solo artist, having formed in 1979 by vocalist/guitarist Myles Hunter (Avalon), bassist Martyn Jones and guitarist Rob Kennedy. They played a fair few gigs in their native Canada until they called it a day in 1983. The band returned a year later with Hunter, Jones and Kennedy now joined by ex-Zon member Howard Helm on keyboards and drummer Dave Mihal. The band signed to a small local label soon after, and the debut ‘Affairs In Babylon’ came out in 1984.
The band’s name caused issues though as the label tried to market the group as a solo act which did not work well for anyone involved. When Michael Fury received an offer from an US based major label, they bought back the rights for their album, re-mixed and re-record most of the parts and also added five new songs, whilst dropping five songs from the original version of ‘Affairs In Babylon’. In addition Helix drummer Brian Doerner joined the band and ‘Affairs In Babylon’ got re-issued under the new band name of Refugee. Quite an involved history for the band and now AOR Heaven are giving the original version of ‘Affairs In Babylon’ a limited edition run of 1000 copies that includes liner notes by Dave Reynolds.
‘Through The Thunder’ is full of parping synths underpinned by guitar riffs and solos. This should have been all over the radio back in the day. Plenty of uptempo melodic rock to be enjoyed including ‘(Janie) Here We Go Again’ and ‘White Wine and Roses’. The latter allows Howard Helm to show off his keyboards skills. All this and ballads too, like the album’s closing song ‘Love Comes Down’. You can almost feel the heat from the lighters in the air on this one…
For those who loved, and still do love, the classic early to mid-80s melodic rock sound this is a shoe in for your collection. ***1/2
Review by Jason Ritchie
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Featured Albums w/c 18 October 2021 (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 TAO Prophecy (Tarot Label Media)
12:00-13:00 LEVERAGE Above The Beyond (Frontiers)
14:00-16:00 JOE TILSTON Tightrope (Our Records)
Power Plays w/c 18 October 2021 (Mon-Fri)
ABOVE SNAKES Nothing To Lose (indie)
FRANKIE AND THE WITCH FINGERS Cookin’ (Greenway Records)
LEADFINGER The Fall Of Rome (Golden Robot)
FEMEGADES Stealing Numbers (Regent Street Records)
TIGERSIDE Any Contact (indie)
INDYA Love Like Champagne (indie)
EDGE OF DESTINY Forsaken (indie)
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