STREET LEGAL - THUNDERDOME (2000, FRONTIERS)
Bjorn Boge - vocals, bass
Ken Ingwersen - guitars
Bjorn Olav Laudvdal 'BOL' - drums
If this is how Norwegian rock sounds like in the year 2000, then I am greatly encouraged. Put together by the two Bjorn's, this is one heavy, melodic and blues laden workout befit a king. Strange really, when you think that mainman Bjorn Boge had spent several years with Norways best AOR export Da Vinci
, with a sound more akin to massaging the airwaves, rather than stomp all over it as these Street Legal boys are prone to doing! A bit of recent history then: Street Legal prior to signing with Frontiers had a Japanese deal going. They secured this deal which saw them open up to European and US markets which strangely enough, hadn't even heard of them. Criminal really, as this album, and this bands sound are a real kick up the backside! Added to the band's lineup was better known producer Ken Ingwersen. This dude can play some smoking guitar, and it's easy to see he and Ronnie LeTekro
) could be axe-twins! Soundwise, we get the power of acts such as Blue Murder
, the energy of Swedish sensations Pole Position
, and the bluesy funkiness of Sons Of Angels
. If you liked any of these bands, then this album's a must buy then..
The title track 'Thunderdome' (which is also the opener) rips into it in pure John Sykes/Blue Murder
frenzy. Power all the way. The next track 'Chasing the Rainbow' is an absolute pearler, a glorious blues base but rock punchin' anthem. 'Powertool' is another power track, sort of similar to early Bad Moon Rising
material. The ballad 'Calling For You' is a nice change up ballad, with some hot lead guitar zooming in with laser precision during the mid-section. The guitar sound on 'Wrong Side Of Town' and 'Shadow Dance' reminds me so much of that first Masquerade
album, while 'Will I Ever Love Again' is an atmospheric ditty which doesn't quite strike home. I think the band were aiming for Thin Lizzy
's 'The Sun Goes Down' off their 'Thunder And Lightning' album but it doesn't quite get there. Meanwhile 'In The Mood (For Your Love)' sounds like a blatant Van Halen
(DLR era) rip off. In fact, Diamond Dave could schmooze his way through the vocal on this one. Congratulations on a good attempt Bjorn. However in saying that, this song really smokes! The second last track 'Shine On' is a weepy orchestral piece which doesn't really fit the album, while the bonus track 'Folly Town' is a great addition with Doug Aldrich
type guitarwork from Ingwersen.
These guys are gonna be big time if they keep producing stuff like this. It's a great start, though they do need to keep the material consistent. The production is great, the talent undoubtedly there, now all we need is to get some exposure happening for Street Legal. Join the buzz..
02 Chasing The Rainbow
04 Calling For You
05 Wrong Side Of Town
06 Red Light District
07 Stranger In The Night
08 Will I Ever Love Again
09 Shadow Dance
10 In The Mood (For Your Love)
11 Shine On
12 Folly Town (bonus)
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