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Shy - 1987 Excess All Areas



ARTIST: Shy
ALBUM: Excess All Areas
LABEL: RCA
SERIAL: PL 71221
YEAR: 1987
CD REISSUE: 1996, BMG Japan, BVCP-7453 * 2001, Zoom Club (UK), ZCRCD67

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Tony Mills - vocals *Steve Harris - guitars * Paddy McKenna - keyboards * Roy Davis - bass * Alan Kelly - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Emergency * 02 Can't Fight The Nights * 03 Young Heart * 04 Just Love Me * 05 Break Down The Walls * 06 Under Fire * 07 Devil Woman * 08 Talk To Me * 09 When The Love Is Over * 10 Telephone

WEBLINKS: www.shyonline.co.uk


Background
Here's a band representing the very best of mid eighties AOR out of the UK, and also one that deserved to go a little bit further with fame and fortune. Coming out of nowhere in 1983 with their debut 'Once Bitten, Twice..', Shy then progressed onto bigger and better things with the classic 'Brave The Storm' album. For this one they recruited demi-god Neil Kernon, and what we get is near perfect American flavoured AOR played in British fashion. The obvious standouts for the band are the shrill high pitched but powerhouse vocals of Tony Mills, combined with the stylish playing of Steve Harris and the lovely ivory tinklings of Paddy McKenna. This combination when on-song, can perform some wonderful pieces of music.


The Songs
The album opens up with a brace of classic tracks .. 'Emergency', 'Can't Fight The Nights' and the sensational 'Young Heart'. Phew! Gimme a breather! We slow up a bit for the ballad 'Just Love Me' before we race off to bang our heads again to 'Break Down The Walls'. 'Under Fire' and the Cliff Richard chestnut 'Devil Woman' follow suit, and though good, are just slightly behind on what we've already heard so far. 'Talk To Me' increases the tempo again, those brass parps of McKenna sounding like he's taken a Roland keyboard instructors course with Mic Michaeli of Europe. Another fantastic ballad appears in the shape of 'When The Love Is Over' while the album closes out with the racy/pulse driven 'Telephone'.


In Summary
Any other UK band (apart from perhaps FM, Dare, Strangeways, Magnum) would be hard pressed to play AOR this well. Though Mills vocal style takes a bit of getting used to, he is one of the compelling reasons I like this band so much. The CD is now available through Zoom Club Records, and along with the aforementioned 'Brave The Storm' these two are compulsory acquisitions for your collection.


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Tags: Shy (UK) 
 
Comments
#1 | Jez on June 13 2008 15:59:47
In one word Tremendous - Their best disc by a mile. One listen to 'Young Heart' and you will be singing it for weeks afterward.
#2 | george_the_jack on June 19 2008 11:58:12
Classix AOR memorium.....
#3 | rostoned on November 11 2008 00:27:07
Tony Mills vocal tone reminds me so much of the legendary Fergie Frederiksen.

'Emergency' was written by none other than Michael Bolton and Duane Hitchings and could have been an outtake from Michael's 'Everybody's Crazy', which was produced by Neil Kernon as well. Don Dokken and producer Neil Kernon have a songwriting credit on the track 'Break Down The Walls', which ironically is a dead ringer for the track 'Everybody's Crazy' from Bolton's album of the same name!

It's also interesting to note that the US version has a different track list order of the A-side comparing to what appears above and even if not listed (but just thanked) there could be a partecipation of players like Bob Kulick and Michael Thompson on guitar solos and Duane Hitchings on keyboards, in addition to the usual bunch of background singers which Kernon always used, including Terry Brock.
 
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