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Raintimes - 2017 Raintimes

ARTIST: Raintimes
ALBUM: Raintimes
LABEL: Frontiers
YEAR: 2017


LINEUP: Pierpaolo Monti - drums * Davide Barbieri - keyboards * Mike Shotton - vocals * Sven Larsson - guitars * Ivan Gonzalez - guitars * Andrea Gipponi - bass

TRACK LISTING: 01 Forever Gone * 02 Make My Day * 03 Don't Ever Give Up * 04 Swan * 05 I Need Tonight * 06 Raintimes * 07 Just A Little Bit More * 08 Empty Days * 09 Together As Friends * 10 Missing Piece * 11 I See The Light


WEBLINKS: Official Website | FB Page

This is probably a band and an album that will appeal to the purist AOR regulars at GDM. Apparently the material from Raintimes is based on the Journey breakaway group called The Storm. Most of you remember them surely? They released their quite excellent debut back in 1991 and another album in 1995. Kevin Chalfant was the lead singer of that band and he's a pretty good voice I'll admit, if a little difficult to work with. I'm guessing then that Raintimes are a tribute of sorts to The Storm.

The Songs
Admittedly, when I first sat down with this, it didn't grab me. I gave it a second chance at review time, and with more time and a better listening environment, the album came to life under a decent set of headphones. Aren't we thankful for that? I've always been a fan of six-string Swedish maestro Sven Larsson (Xinema, Street Talk, solo), and hearing him on another AOR project is like an early Christmas present for me. He's joined by Spanish talent Ivan Gonzalez (91 Suite, Secret, Room Experience), so we get double the bang for the buck. There are highlights scattered all over the disc, the musicianship is superb, but really, you wouldn't expect anything less from this six-part assembly. Highlights for me: definitely 'I Need Tonight', 'Just A Little Bit' and the pulsing 'Together As Friends'. While we're at it, check out 'Make My Day' and 'Just A Little Bit More', featuring big vocal chants. The opener 'Forever More' is probably closest to The Storm's original material, but really, there is a lot to dig into it. Like unwrapping a Christmas present!

In Summary
Musically, Raintimes are delivering well produced AOR, with lovely touches throughout. Don't try and skip through the album in a hurry, otherwise you might miss some thrilling moments. A grower, and as stated above, one for the purist AOR fans!
Raintimes - 2017 Forever More

Raintimes - 2017 Don't Ever Give Up

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#1 | jeffrey343 on February 13 2018 15:38:24
Definitely a nice album. Sounds a lot like a cross between Rob Moratti / Final Frontier and The Storm. Like George, it took a little while to really gel for me, but it'll be a part of my rotation.
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