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19-11-2017 09:44
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Articles Home » 2004 Articles » Workforce - 2004 Wrecked, Welded And Wet
Workforce - 2004 Wrecked, Welded And Wet

ARTIST: Workforce
ALBUM: Wrecked Welded And Wet
LABEL: Metal Mayhem
YEAR: 2004


LINEUP: Ron Kimball - vocals, guitars, harp * Ralph Henry - guitars, vocals * Rich Mello - guitars, vocals * Chris Holmes - keyboards, vocals * Rick Henry - bass, vocals * Scott Henry - drums, percussion

Additional Musicians: Jimmy Lyons - lead guitar * Glenn Letsch - bass * Vickia Brinkley - background vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Whole Lotta Lovin' * 02 Heart Of All Men * 03 Next To Heaven * 04 Magic Is Gone * 05 Ready To Burn * 06 Perrys On The Case * 07 Not Enough Love * 08 Eye On The Prize * 09 Lonely Angel * 10 Love Got Lost * 11 Over And Over * 12 Don'tcha Know * 13 You're My Baby * 14 Flesh And Blood

Another turn-up for the books is this retrospective release from cult AOR band Workforce. Most of us remember them courtesy of their rather cool debut album from 1989. Lots of divided opinion by many scribes as to the merits of this band, but one thing is for certain - these guys know how to play a brash form of AOR/melodic rock. And I have to say, I kinda like them. Actually, I kinda like them a lot! Quite a 'big' sounding band they were back then, huge drums and back-end, and with six guys on the case, a thin sound with little on instrumentation was nigh on an impossibility. 'Wrecked Welded And Wet' was Workforce's never released second album. Signed originally with Scotti Bros, this material never got out of the Factory. A shame really, as it could've opened more doors for the band, but the reality was, this style of music was on a downward spiral at the start of the 90's decade. It seems though, that the 21st Century has ushered in a boom (we call it a 'boom', the reality is probably somewhat different given actual sales, and turnover) for reissue product.

As far as we're concerned, the more the merrier, a situation the GLORY-DAZE site wants to promote. Kudos to Ryan Northrop at Metal Mayhem for getting this one off the shelf! Fans of their debut album will find the new material on 'Wrecked Welded And Wet' an easy continuation from their debut. It's as if these guys made two albums worth of material at the time, and decided to hold off on the second - which was probably the case. One observation upon listening to this album is that these songs appear to have more 'oomph' than those heard previously. The Henry brothers Rick and Scott keep the whole affair back-end together. Is it any wonder that Ron Kimball is the mirror-image of singer Andy Denton (from Ruscha and Legend Seven)? Take a bit of Bob Carlisle circa Allies and this guy has a voice tailor-made for this genre. The keyboard dabbles by Chris Holmes give this heavy-handed form of AOR loads of colour while Ralph Henry and Rich Mello's guitars zing with fury most of the time. A great combination.

The Songs
So, of the songs, absolute standouts include: the at times brutal 'Next To Heaven' offset by some brimming synths stalking around the speakers and hiding behind the furious assault of twin guitars. 'Lonely Angel' shifts and shuffles with a sense of urgency while the melodrama of 'Love Got Lost' is best described as an intense power-ballad. Some of the tracks hark back to the debut.. 'Live With It' (this is track two, not 'Heart Of All Men as listed on the sleeve) had me humming 'Restless' all over again! Elsewhere, tracks like 'Magic Is Gone', 'Whole Lotta Lovin' and 'Ready To Burn' all keep the excitement level well up.

In Summary
Admittedly, the production sounds a little dusty in places, and considering these tracks came from the dark vaults of history, that ain't surprising. However, the arrangements and musicianship are both top notch. Mostly, it's an enjoyable romp of hard hitting AOR. Watch out soon for a new interview with Workforce. I'm sure we'll learn more about this band than ever before!

Related Articles
Workforce - 1989 Workforce
Workforce - 2004 Interview with Ralph Henry Jnr (Jun 2004)
Workforce - 2004 Wrecked Welded And Wet

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