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Articles Home » 2011 Articles » Shy - 2011 Shy
Shy - 2011 Shy

LABEL: Escape Music
YEAR: 2011
SPONSOR: S Eder (Connecting Music)


LINEUP: Lee Small - vocals * Steve Harris - guitars * Roy Davis - bass * Joe Basketts - keyboards * Bob Richards - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Land Of A Thousand Lies * 02 So Many Tears * 03 Ran Out Of Time * 04 Breathe * 05 Blood On The Line * 06 Pray * 07 Only For The Night * 08 Live For Me * 09 Over You * 10 Sanctuary * 11 Save Me * 12 Union Of Souls



It's been a good six years since the last Shy album.. 2005's 'Sunset And Vine'. And truth be told, it was a good album too, ranked quite highly by many for the 2005 year. It was also the last album to feature Tony Mills who has since moved onto TNT and featured on last years Brit newcomers Serpentine's debut album. Replacing Mills is the rather excellent Lee Small, previously seen with British melodic rockers Surveillance, Small's voice is wrapped up in a Glenn Hughes meets Goran Edman delivery system that'll have some of wondering if he is a good fit. Well I can tell you undoubtedly so, that he is! Despite the relative inactivity, Shy have been pretty settled personnel wise, their stint at Firefest 2 back in November 2005 might have been their last significant gig, but if the material on this new set is anything to go by, it won't be long before they are gracing the stages once more. Now signed to Escape Music, this band have definitely done the rounds in terms of record labels, but at least someone is still giving this a band a 'go'.

The Songs
Dramatic near progressive metal keyboards provide the entrance way to 'Land Of A Thousand Lies'. It's Egyptian themed, and pretty heavy in its style, much heavier than anything found on 'Sunset And Vine' by comparison. Small is impressive from the outset, and I can tell this one is gonna be a goodie from wo to go. 'So Many Tears' is furious stuff, the guitar soloing from Steve Harris is off the scale. Listening to 'Ran Out Of Time', I was reminded of early classic Talisman, this is a staggeringly good track, no two ways about it. 'Breathe' gives the band a chance to do just that, a power-ballad for all intent and purposes, with keyboardist Joe Basketts providing a wall of string based orchestration. Normal transmission resumes on 'Blood On The Line', another strong contender on an album that continues to surprise. The AOR attributes are apparent for all to hear when listening to 'Pray'. Very melodic, keyboards everywhere, and a verse/chorus that has more in common with mainstream bands. I could've sworn that I was listening to Goran Edman singing for Street Talk when I heard 'Only For The Night', regardless, this is one killer track! You gotta hear it for yourself. Not to be outdone, 'Life For Me' continues the brilliance before it. With Lee Small out front, Shy have really developed a set of legs that could take them somewhere notable into the future. The 'Shy ones' chart a course plunging straight for the heart of AOR Central with 'Over You'. I don't think there will be any disagreement over the destination and final outcome to many of the readers here. Terrific stuff. 'Sanctuary' has a prog metal like theatrical style, it's quite dramatic in parts and a bit of a contrast to the rest of the songs here. 'Save Me' is more soaring stuff in the vein of Brazen Abbot and Talisman, the keyboards are rich and glorious, get under a set of headphones for this one. 'Union Of Souls' is the finale, and by this late stage, Shy can do no wrong, another keyboard/guitar affair that cannot squeeze any more melody into it than what is already there.

In Summary
I had to go back and have a re-listen to this album, just to convince myself that 'Shy' was as good as I wrote it up to be. Yep, it is, surprisingly so. Hot damn! Despite being a British entity, Shy have wrapped a thick veneer of European melodic rock/metal around themselves, and thrown a sugar blanket of AOR over the top for good measure. Lee Small's vocals are amazing, Steve Harris as always provides much of the musical ideas and the two of them along with the remainder of the band tear it up like never before. Andy Faulkner and the band have produced the album in tandem, while Simon Hanhart (who has mixed the dials for many) does so here, and a fine job done by all it would seem. I really enjoyed 'Sunset And Vine', but this new effort is a different beast and should be earmarked as one of the albums for 2011. Definitely a top 5 for me!

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#1 | gdazegod on October 11 2011 09:10:56
YouTube Video:
#2 | gdazegod on October 11 2011 09:12:15
YouTube Video:
#3 | swazi on October 11 2011 15:36:44
Yes, definitely a great release, which will end up high in my top 10 of 2011!
#4 | englandashes on October 29 2011 11:15:25
Just arrived this morning, very surprised how good the release is, highly recommended!
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