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Articles Home » 1994 Articles » Boston - 1994 Walk On
Boston - 1994 Walk On

ARTIST: Boston
ALBUM: Walk On
YEAR: 1994
CD REISSUE: 2009, Universal (Japan), UICY-93918


LINEUP: Tom Scholz - guitars, bass, all keyboards * Fran Cosmo - vocals * David Sikes - vocals, bass * Tommy Funderburk - vocals * Gary Pihl - guitars * Doug Huffman - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 I Need Your Love * 02 Surrender To Me * 03 Livin' For You * 04 Walk On Medley - Walkin' At Night * 05 Walk On * 06 Get Organ-ized * 07 Walk On (Some More) * 08 What's Your Name * 09 Magdalene * 10 We Can Make It


Boston. To many people it's the name of an American city, but to us it's much more - the birthplace of our beloved genre AOR. It was Tom Scholz and his bandmates who unleashed their timeless debut album in 1976 and the world has never been the same since. Refusing to play bluesy rock guitar like everyone else, Scholz invented the AOR guitar sound and riff scale, and insisted on flowing and hugely melodic vocals. In Brad Delp he had one of the purest voices in music history at his disposal, and the public were won over in millions. So here we are in 1994, 18 years down the road and the fourth Boston album 'Walk On' is before us, sans Delp. Luckily one of the replacement vocalists is Fran Cosmo, who provided stunning vocals to the 1984 Orion The Hunter album, regarded by some as the missing Boston record.

The Songs
'I Need Your Love' has to be one of the most classic intros ever - floating in on a wave of church organ keys and insistent guitar plucking, when that massive riff kicks in you'll be reaching for your thickest jacket to warm your chilled spine. This track manages to keep the classic aura going right through with big chord changes and an even bigger chorus with that 'wall of vocals' we know and love. As a single it reached the Billboard top 50. 'Surrender To Me' is a pounding rocker, heavy on riffs but even heavier on the effortless melodies, with another anthem chorus of unearthly calibre. 'Livin' For You' is the first of two ballads and comes across like Richard Marx at his best with a dose of extra guitar power. In the middle we're confronted with a bit of self indulgence from Scholz in the form of a medley, starting with a flashy guitar solo and then moving into the turbo charged 'Walk On', quite melodic but a bit on the frenetic side. Three minutes later we flow into 'Get Organ-ized', Scholz's tour de force on the Hammond B3 organ. Some great musicianship, but at 4:28 we could've had another full Boston song instead. The medley closes off with 'Walk On (Some More)', much the same as the first one. To be honest, four actual songs would've gone down much better, but there are some great moments in the medley if you have the patience to get to them. We're back on track again with 'What's Your Name', a refreshingly simple track but no less melodic for it. 'Magdelene', a cover of the Hybrid Ice track from 1982, brings back the wall of vocals and big guitar/keyboard power - with all due respect, it blows the original away. The closing track is 'We Can Make It', the anthem of togetherness featuring every Boston ingredient from melodies in the sky right through to percussive hand claps. The choruses seem to get bigger as the song progresses and the overdriven hookladen riffing is out of this world.

In Summary
Having been released in 1994, this was an important album for AOR as a whole. Remember that grunge/alternative was at it's peak and grunge loving journalists were celebrating the 'death' of classic rock and AOR. 'Walk On' charted at # 7 on the Billboard album charts and sold over a million copies, gaining platinum status. AOR was alive and some hasty words were choked upon. However, the fifth Boston album 'Corporate America' which surfaced eight years later was the death-knell for Scholz and company.. unfortunately.

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#1 | rostoned on July 30 2008 18:53:48
Very good album, too bad the production (especially the drum sound) sucks on several tracks. Tom how about a real drummer or a real drums sound?
#2 | Eric on February 11 2009 20:40:00
I saw this tour. Not great, in fact I think I left during the encore. 'I Need Your Love' is a great tune though.

I do remember Delp walking through the arena (Target Center- Minneapolis) prior to the show in a jean jacket and hoodie. I knew who he was, but no one recognized him. I was way too afraid to approach him for some reason, but now I wish I had. R.I.P.
#3 | jeffrey343 on February 11 2009 21:17:24
I think this was the only new rock release I bought in 1994. (I was in a country and smooth jazz phase back then because of the dearth of good rock on the radio.) So obviously it got a lot of play by me that summer and fall and filled a huge void in my life. I can't say that I was a humongous Boston fan, but I did have their first three CDs at the time. I was surprised how quickly I went out to get this. I still play it a few times a year when I'm in a Boston mood. I used 'I Need Your Love' to christen the stereo in the car I bought in '95.
#4 | trillion1999 on October 25 2011 14:01:51
I saw this sitting there on hopefully one of the last record-conventions I ever went to.I never picked it up.I love the original of Magdalene so I guess this together with the second album is what I need to complete the jigsaw so to speak.I loved the first and the third so there is no reason why I should not take to this one too.
#5 | swazi on November 12 2012 19:26:23
Not bad, but I still think the first 2 were their best releases. All later ones dropped in quality, imo.
#6 | Explorer on May 16 2014 06:47:54
Dug this one out again recently, and a reassessment is in order I think, thoroughly enjoyed it actually, having initially dismissing it upon release,although I can't see me changing my mind on the latest Boston offering.
#7 | super80boy on May 13 2017 16:42:30
I recently bought the vinyl version of this album, pretty hard to come by due to it being issued in the 90's. Comes with a nice gatefold jacket and that always cool Boston logo artwork. Being it was seven-year span between the last album, there's going to be change. For Boston fans, like myself, this is a rewarding album, full of their trademark melodies and arrangements. I do really like the rocking title song, I vaguely remember hearing it on our local radio station soon after the album was released.
#8 | gdazegod on May 14 2017 00:04:26
There's a good name for a band, that has Def Leppard and Boston like qualities... SEVEN YEAR SPAN.
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