Album review: LOVERBOY – Keep It Up/Lovin’ Every Minute Of It (Remasters)

Rock Candy Records [release date: 17.12.21]

The remasters of Loverboy’s third album, Keep It Up (1983), and their fourth, Lovin’ Every Minute Of It (1985) follow hard on the heels of the first two, Get Lucky (1981) and the self titled debut (1980).

(It’s generally accepted that the essence of a remastered album is the unaltered sound of the original recording, cleaned up, polished and balanced for today’s audio. Rock Candy seem to get this right every time.)

If any band characterised the rise of the melodic rock genre it was Loverboy. Those first two releases were gateway albums for high calibre US AOR, which came from every angle as the labels caught on.

Bands like Van Halen, Cheap Trick, Def Leppard seemed to claim the fame, but you only have to hear Mike Reno’s singular vocals, perfectly toned for melodic rock, and Paul Dean’s tough but finely calibrated riffs on ‘One Sided Love Affair’ and ‘Strike Zone’ from Keep It Up to appreciate the quality – and indeed depth – of the band’s music. The charting singles, ‘Hot Girls In Love’ and ‘Queen Of Broken Hearts’ are everything their titles suggest. It was the band’s third album to be produced by hugely talented Canadian, Bruce Fairbairn…the hits just kept on coming. ****

Tom (YandT/Krokus) Allom produced 1986′s Lovin Every Minute Of It.
Being a shrewd bunch, the band had no qualms about turning to Mutt Lange for the title track and to Jonathan Caine and Harry Nilsson for ‘This Could Be The Night’.

Despite some inevitable music critic (you know, the ones with a short attention span) backlash, both songs were US Billboard top ten entries. Fellow Canadian Jim Vallance contributed ‘Dangerous’, and prolific hit writer Bill Wray, who penned best selling songs for Diana Ross, ELP, Trixter and Ace Frehley, co-wrote most of the remaining tracks with Dean and Reno. 

Like every Loverboy album to date, it’s loud yet it has soul and warmth.
The heart on the sleeve love laments and the pulse quickening hooks perhaps began to pale a little, but it still went platinum. They must have been doing something right. ***1/2

Review by Brian McGowan

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UNTIL 9 Headstone (indie)
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