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Articles Home » 2007 Articles » Frederiksen-Denander - 2007 Baptism By Fire
Frederiksen-Denander - 2007 Baptism By Fire

ARTIST: Frederiksen-Denander
ALBUM: Baptism By Fire
LABEL: Frontiers
YEAR: 2007


LINEUP: Fergie Frederiksen - vocals * Tommy Denander - guitars, keyboards, bass * Michael Thompson - guitars * Steve Porcaro - hammond organ * Eric Daniel - drums * Thomas Vikstrom, Jan Johansen - backing vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Let Him Go * 02 Right Heart Wrong Time * 03 Silver Lining * 04 Crossing Over * 05 Written In Stone * 06 My Saving Grace * 07 Baptism By Fire * 08 Can't Get Enough * 09 Never Try To Love Again * 10 Dead End * 11 Keep A Light On * 12 Left With Nothing


For those of you who have followed Tommy Denander's career since 2001, it was only a matter of time before he hooked a full project involving Dennis 'Fergie' Frederiksen. The former Trillion, Toto and Le Roux vocalist has never been too far out of the limelight - participating on many projects, usually in tandem with someone else rather than isolated on his own. Fergie has appeared on the Radioactive albums as well, but with Tommy's increasingly busy schedule, just fitting in some spare time was always going to be a challenge. The duo were joined by some celebrious outside talent (refer above), but somehow I'm not convinced that the songs are 'all there'. Something is definitely missing. Perhaps rushed? Who knows.

The Songs
Whereas a song like 'Written In Stone' is a genuinely good effort, the fact that it is five songs into the CD before my interest is tweaked is a bit of a worry. 'My Saving Grace' is a tight fitting tune that squeaks rich vocals (lead and harmony) out the side. The title track is another to gain a pass-mark, finally a great chorus that lifts it a notch. Also on the upside is the lovely 'Never Try To Love Again' - a disclaimer to all things Toto were signed beforehand hopefully? 'Dead End' is a coarse rocker, guitar roughened amid the melody. In my opinion, where this album misses the mark is on really strong and distinctive choruses. Listen to 'Silver Lining' for instance. The song works up nicely in anticipation for something special at chorus time, only to fall flat with something uninspiring. Ditto 'Right Heart, Wrong Time' and 'Can't Get Enough'. For a song to stick, the choruses (apart from other musical elements) need to grab. I needed some epoxy glue for grip.. not a lot was to be found I'm afraid.

In Summary
I saw over on the Rock Report site this album got given the full-beamer - six stars! I hear it differently - certainly not six. Tommy will tell us that this is a separate project altogether - away from Radioactive, Deacon Street etc. However, the lines between them are so fuzzy and blurry now that any sign of uniqueness is just about lost. What is apparent now is a change to the recipe.. sorry to say.

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#1 | jeffrey343 on May 13 2008 20:05:17
George, for the past few years, I've relied on the reviews by you and others here to make sure I don't miss any great music that I have yet to discover. Well, somehow this one came to my attention a couple of days ago, and lo & behold it is available on Rhapsody. I've played it a couple of times, and all I can say is that you must have reviewed this on one of your bad days eek I love this! I usually agree with you, but I'd personally add about three more points to your rating. I'm glad this is one that I could listen to immediately and for free, otherwise I would have passed on it and suffered the rest of my life... I'll cut you some slack because I've found so much great stuff here. But I think this is bloody good stuff!
#2 | gdazegod on May 13 2008 21:11:35
Probably because I've listened to so many (if not all) of Tommy's projects. After awhile the lines became blurry, as I pointed out in the summary paragraph.
#3 | Jez on June 16 2008 21:56:35
If you have liked Tommy Denander's previous works (I include myself big time on this) then this Frederiksen-Denander project is bound to appeal. This maybe a point that some people won't like about it, as It doesn't exactly tread any new boundaries sound/songwise and does sound very similar to a few of his other projects, Radioactive especially. That being said, Fergie sings as well as I have heard in a long time,Tommy plays some blinding solos as ever. There are some excellent tunes here as well, all expertly played and produced. Definately an album I will play regularly, as with Tommy's other albums, but if you have not bothered with Tommy D's other stuff before,then this isn't going to change you mind either.
#4 | jeffrey343 on December 23 2010 05:05:39
I still listen to this regularly after almost three years. I've heard many of the other albums that Tommy Denander has been involved with, and I must say I prefer this to any of the ones I've heard. Probably because Frederiksen sounds so good here and that he's the only lead singer. I will agree with George that some of the choruses should be stronger, but the songs still work for me due to Frederiksen's great voice. The overall sound overcomes some of the songwriting issues for me.
#5 | swazi on April 07 2012 11:08:30
LOL, I just read the review and comments for the first time. '... on one of your bad days ...' Ha ha ha! Smile Yeah, that must certainly have been the case, George!
Never mind, musical tastes differ sometimes, even if they are usually very similar. I love this disc as well.
#6 | gdazegod on April 07 2012 13:51:08
Yeah, must have been. Funny though, the webmaster at Fergie's website didn't bother putting this review up on his site, though he did put up the recent 'Happiness Is The Road' album, which I gave a fair review. Fickle huh? lol..
#7 | swazi on April 07 2012 17:14:50
Well, objectiveness only goes so far ...! Wink
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