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Articles Home » 1988 Articles » Forsale - 1988 Stranger In Town
Forsale - 1988 Stranger In Town

ARTIST: Forsale
ALBUM: Stranger In Town
LABEL: Forsale, Steinblatt Publishing
YEAR: 1988
CD REISSUE: 1997, BMG, 74321461792 * 2010, ZYX Music (Germany), GCR 20053-2


LINEUP: Steve Lee - vocals * Mauro Lupazzi - guitar * Leo Leoni - guitar * Lute Warsitz - bass * Neil Otupacca - keyboards * Johnny Frizti - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Witch Hunt (Intro) * 02 Stranger In Town * 03 Carry On * 04 Only Love * 05 No Time No Chance * 06 Rollin' On * 07 Run For Life * 08 Night Spell * 09 Call My Name * 10 Fallin' Down * 11 So Long

This album has only recently come out of the woodwork for me in the last few days. I have had this for years, on tape and now as a fileshare. Trying to obtain a CD of this is nigh on impossible, along with a couple of other albums I am trying to buy on Ebay - seems I am always getting outbid at the eleventh hour. Back in 1988, this Swiss based outfit landed a deal to release 'Stranger In Town' on vinyl and the newer CD format. Unfortunately, Forsale didn't live up to their band name, as buyers couldn't find a copy of this for love nor money. It wasn't until 1997 that 'Stranger In Town' was re-released, and is now easier to come by (supposedly), though I haven't had any luck. As you can see by the band lineup, two members of Gotthard; namely singer Steve Lee and guitarist Leo Leoni appear on this album. Leoni more as a guest, Lee sings on all tracks. Musically, this is absolutely nothing like Gotthard. There are other Swiss bands that make for better comparisons. Try Purple Heart, Subway and Ultranite, though to be fair, Forsale have a more organic sound about them, with nods to Lucifers Friend, Deep Purple and Uriah Heep all seeping through at one point or another.

The Songs
A keyboard mosaic is what you would call the intro 'Witch Hunt'. Obviously a showcase for keyboardist Neil Otupacca, this one lays the Forsale foundation - with a load of church organ and percussive effects. Then we are into it with the title track 'Stranger In Town'. Nice middle ground AOR, with excellent keys and the golden throat of Steve Lee laying down his class from the start. Pumping keyboards set the dial on 'Carry On', for AORsters this stuff is like oxygen! One of my fave tracks is the power ballad 'Only Love', the track swimming in atmospherics and reverb. Again, the keyboards lead the way, with guitars coming in where required. 'No Time No Chance' is a very 80's AOR with an American indie flavour to it. Think of bands like Magnum (the American version) and Limousine.. this is what this sounds like. 'Rollin' On' sees Forsale jumping onto the Lucifers Friend/Uriah Heep bandwagon. The organ work is copy-cat stuff to a tee, while the energy of the track is full-on and relentless. Keeping the momentum going (more or less segueing into this next track) is 'Run For Your Life'. The style is similar to the previous track, with a fast tempo and more classic organ work to the fore. Check out the huge keyboard parps on 'Night Spell', obviously some big fat patch from the Roland D-series of synths by the sounds of things! 'Call My Name' leading off with an intro of bass harmonics, is an acoustic flavoured ballad. Lee's superior vocals prop this track with ease. Returning to the 'Lucifers Heep' reference points is the rollicking 'Fallin' Down', while the closer 'So Long' is indeed a farewell of sorts. Starting off as a ballad, the band venture into the AOR departure lounge by songs end, at least leaving us with an upbeat surge upon exit.

In Summary
As mentioned, this received a reissue in 1997, and apart from the Gotthard connection, nothing has been heard from this excellent one-off combination ever again. A worthy addition to the GLORY-DAZE site for sure!

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#1 | george_the_jack on September 25 2008 22:24:45
As a fan of Gotthard and Steve's voice, it's impossible for me not to like this album...Though, being completely honest, I have to say that Forsale has nothing to do with the familiar top standards of Gotthard. 'Stranger In Town' is an album in a rather AOR mood with a few worthy moments. Steve's voice sounds too immature and not so technically whole but emotionally you get the 'message' you want when you listen to him throughout the album.The st track is brilliant with a catchy melodic line getting stuck in your brain and an unbelievable harmonic chorus! Fantastic song that stands out being the highlight of this band. Recommended for the impenitent fans of Gotthard and for history's shake! Thumbs Up
#2 | swazi on November 04 2012 10:45:44
There are a number of bootlegs of this CD flying around on the market. I really can't tell if my copy is an original one. Looks and sounds good, though.
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