WHEN GUITARISTJohn Norum left Europe in 1986, at the very height of their popularity, the news was met with shock and incredulity. It was a stunning decision considering that he had been a founding member of the band (and its predecessor Force) for seven years and seemed so musically at ease with their exciting and successful brand of melodic rock. There was a lot of head scratching and amazement that someone with his fortitude and talent could turn his back on mass adoration and financial security by leaving Europe to follow his own muse. But all was not lost as John’s game plan was simple and deftly executed, setting course for a well received solo career.
Recruiting a new backing band of long-time musical friends (including Marcel Jacob, a former Europe member, on bass) and continuing his relationship with Swedish executives at the Sony label he redefined his ambitions away from the lighter pop rock path of Europe. This time around the music was harder, heavier and full of serious conviction, allowing John to unleash full on guitar work, woven within leaner and meaner songs. Whilst his soloing had always been impressive, this time around the playing was simply out of this world.
Centre stage on three tracks was vocalist Goran Edman whose forceful and melodic voice is delightfully mature, lending the material a worldclass sheen. Indeed, Norum’s own voice was just as impressive. Songs such as ‘Let Me Love You’, the Whitesnake-influenced ‘Blind’ and ‘Someone Else Here’, set an impressive standard. Oh, and look out for the choice cover of the Vinnie Vincent penned ‘Back On The Streets’.
SPECIAL DELUXE COLLECTOR’S EDITION. Fully remastered sound shaped from 24 BIT digital technology, features 6 bonus tracks, contains ‘Let Me Love You’, ‘Blind’ and ‘Someone Else Here’, 12 page full colour booklet – 3,500 word essay and enhanced artwork
TRACK LISTING: 1. LET ME LOVE YOU 2. LOVE IS MEANT TO LAST FOREVER 3. TOO MANY HEARTS 4. SOMEONE ELSE HERE 5. ETERNAL FLAME 6. BACK ON THE STREETS 7. BLIND 8. LAW OF LIFE 9. WE’LL DO WHAT IT TAKES TOGETHER 10. IN CHASE OF THE WIND BONUS TRACKS: 11. WILD ONE. LIVE IN STOCKHOLM EP: 12. FREE BIRDS IN FLIGHT 13. ETERNAL FLAME 14. DON’T BELIEVE A WORD 15. BLIND 16. BAD REPUTATION