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Victory Group - 1982 Tomorrow



ARTIST: Victory Group
ALBUM: Tomorrow
LABEL: House Of Lords
SERIAL: HLR-10006
YEAR: 1982
CD REISSUE: 2008, Retrospect Records, RR-372
SPONSOR: Retrospect Records

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Ian Oscar - lead vocals, guitar * David Heidt - lead vocals, bass * Winston Quelch - lead, rhythm, acoustic guitars * Mark Gajb - keyboards, backing vocals * Don Strate - drums, percussion

TRACK LISTING: 01 Tomorrow * 02 Rock Thru The Night * 03 Goodbye, Goodbye * 04 Turn And Walk Away * 05 Take The Time * 06 Falling Down * 07 Don't Let Go * 08 Fantasia * 09 It's The Road


Background
Canada has thrown up a number of undiscovered bands from the 80's. It's a pity we've only just found about them in the last few years. Thank god for the Internet, as many of these rarities would've remained upon somebody's dusty top shelf. Add to this list, Alberta based Victory Group. With a name that might give the impression of some evangelical Christian rock band doing the rounds during the Jesus rock era, Victory Group were far removed from that scene. The two key members of this band were lead singer Ian Oscar and guitarist Winston Quelch, who were previously members of British Columbia band One Horse Blue, which also at one point featured Jim Foster. The band's only album 'Tomorrow' was produced by ex Painter, Hammersmith and 451 alumni Dan Lowe, and comes across in the same style as late 70's early 80's era April Wine, Prototype, Straight Lines, Hellfield and Orphan. Victory Group signed to a small Edmonton based label called House Of Lords, but unfortunately they didn't survive for too long, hence this album slipping through the cracks into yesteryear obscurity.


Original album cover for House Of Lords Records


The Songs
You hear the various comparisons very early in the piece, the title track 'Tomorrow' pulses away nicely, sharp guitar lines, pumping bass, and some deft keyboard touches. Lead singer Ian Oscar is in fine voice, and is a great talent. 'Rock Thru The Night' is a mild mid-tempo anthem well suited to the bar rooms of the western Prairies. The big synths dominate early on 'Goodbye Goodbye', the tried and true AOR formula working well yet again, though it does have a crisp poppy edge to it. 'Turn And Walk Away' has a slightly darker new wave like edge, mono synths providing the plinky-plonk motif, but the band go into overdrive on the solo section. Very cool. The first ballad 'Take The Time' meanders along with its blues-base ever present, following soon after is the very harmony laden 'Falling Down', it has a big piano tapping away in the background, but the guitars are very much to the fore. The tempo picks up for 'Don't Let Go', a Chilliwack styled number, while the Victory Group's brand of AOR with piano parts high in the equation are expressed well on the last two tracks 'Fantasia' and 'It's The Road'.


In Summary
Though Victory Group were shortlived, some of the members went on to other gigs, but most settled back into a 9-5 routine and are scattered between B.C and Alberta. Again, Retrospect picked this up for a digital reissue in 2009, and with a different cover from the original. Fans of Canadian AOR who enjoy some of the acts mentioned in this review should take stock, before this CD too becomes a rarity.


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Comments
#1 | Recordjnky on August 16 2010 09:10:35
awesome review! We changed the album cover by request of the band.
 
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