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Articles Home » 2009 Articles » Stateline - 2009 Stateline
 
Stateline - 2009 Stateline



ARTIST: Stateline
ALBUM: Stateline
LABEL: AOR-FM Records
SERIAL: CD0906
YEAR: 2009
SPONSOR: Bruce Donachie (AOR-FM Records)

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Paul Allen - vocals; Taff Jenkins - guitars; Glenn Johnson - guitars; Andy Mott - bass; Andy Fletcher - bass; Tim Brown - keyboards; Mark Callaghan - drums; Rick Chandler - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Can't Get Enough * 02 Searchin' * 03 Forever * 04 Enough Is Enough * 05 Emergency * 06 Young, Wild & Dangerous * 07 Borderline * 08 Rescue * 09 Love Don't Go * 10 Perfect Timing * 11 Hand On My Heart * 12 Can't Get Enough (bonus video)

RATING:

WEBLINKS: www.aor-fm.com : www.statelineuk.com


Background
AOR-FM Records are all about mainly rare and obscure AOR, and with latest candidates Stateline, the mantra is retained. Of their releases to date, these 80's AORsters from Chesterfield UK are perhaps the most obscure of the lot. Unless you were hanging around the British fanzines of the day or maybe even Metal Forces magazine, then Stateline probably don't mean a lot to you. Formed in 1987, the band released a series of demos and singles, all of which have now been bundled onto this repackaged CD, representing the entire Stateline back catalog onto one disc. During the 1987-1989 timeframe, British AOR was a very busy place, with bands lobbed into three major categories: major label, indie and demo. The latter spawned outfits which you saw scattered through the Demolition section of the aforementioned Metal Forces magazine. I can't recall seeing Stateline in there, but then again, I don't have all the older issues, so I could be mistaken. The band went through a couple of versions of personnel, but the two major constants were singer Paul Allen and keyboardist Tim Brown. Original members Taff Jenkins, Andy Mott and Mark Callaghan were part of the Mk1 version of Stateline, but over the following years, would eventually be replaced by Glenn Johnson, Andy Fletcher and Rick Chandler respectively, until the bands demise in late 1991.


The Songs
The material on this CD come from three separate sessions spanning three years. In mid 1987, the band released a 4 track cassette called 'Dancin' With Strangers'. These included the tracks: 'Rescue', 'Perfect Timing', Love Don't Go' and 'Borderline'. Also from that same timeframe is the track 'Hand On My Heart', which has been added here. In 1989, the band released a two song single, containing 'Emergency' and 'Young, Wild & Dangerous'. The last lot of tracks were recorded in 1990. These were 'Can't Get Enough', 'Searchin', 'Forever' and 'Enough Is Enough'. The band have been simplified for comparisons sake to Bon Jovi, which to me is a bit of a throwaway line, as Stateline's sound is far more complex than that, and besides, and I don't hear or see any trace of a cowboy in their music! The reason why this band land smack in the middle of AOR land is all due to Tim Brown's keyboards. Without them, Stateline would sound literally 'run-of-the-mill'. Combine Tobruk with doses of Lea Hart era Fastway, possibly also Ya-Ya, and you can understand where they are coming from. My picks include the fantastically overblown 'Emergency', the streamlined AOR of 'Rescue' and the infectious keys-are-tapping 'Love Don't Go'. 'Forever' was the only song that didn't do it for me. The keys sounded out of order, while the lead guitar tone was one previously heard by Steve Harris on Shy's 'Sunset And Vine' album - the only aspect I didn't enjoy about that album, which seems to be repeated here.


In Summary
During their time together, several labels were sniffing around in interest, but nothing eventuated. By 1991, with things looking up, the band was beset by personnel departures which proved to be their death knell. The eleven tracks represented here form the backbone of their career, and thanks to AOR-FM Records for having the where-with-all to release them on CD eighteen years later. I wonder how many other gems like this are lying around in someone's home studio waiting for an opportunity to air itself in public? The band's website has a bit about their history, you can see where the band members are all now.. Paul Allen and Tim Brown are still out there doing music, they must be kinda chuffed that Stateside rears its head for one more bash at nostalgia.. Thanks for the memories guys!


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