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Lake - 1984 No Time For Heroes



ARTIST: Lake
ALBUM: No Time For Heroes
LABEL: Polydor
SERIAL: 821 834-1
YEAR: 1984
CD REISSUE: 1990, Polydor, 821 834-2 * 1990, Castle Legends, CLC-5001

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: James Hopkins-Harrison - vocals * Bernd Gertig - lead guitars, vocals * Achim Oppermann - guitars, keyboards, vocals * Thomas Bauer - keyboards, alto saxophone, vocals * Josef Kappl - bass, vocals * Dieter Ahrendt - drums, percussion

TRACK LISTING: 01 Continental Vagabond * 02 Dreams In The Night * 03 Tell Me Why * 04 Heroes * 05 Never Say Never * 06 Instrumental No1 * 07 Johnny Don't Go * 08 Lorraine * 09 Scotsman * 10 Lady Divine * 11 Fight It Together

WEBLINKS: www.lake-music.de


Background
Following a live release (Live - On the Run, 1982) few seem to have seen and much less heard the German band Lake returning in 1984 with the album No Time For Heroes.


The Songs
Opener 'Continental Vagabond' sports a full production, a powerful, but streamlined arrangement and a pre-chorus which to these ears would have sounded totally at home on 'Toto IV'. A pretty good start!

Keyboardist Achim Oppermann then takes the mic for 'Dreams In The Night', a slightly lighter, mid-paced pop rock song catchy enough to provide Lake with a radio hit in Germany.

'Tell Me Why' expands on the more laid-back style, a song a little on the soft side for me, but all credit to James Hopkins Harrison for injecting some very nice melody lines into this one.

With regards to 'Heroes', a title track of sorts, the atmosphere reminds me of a warm summer night, despite the dramatic lyrical content (the heroes, they were crying just like children for their mothers). The chorus strikes me as a little too much of the same following the quite good verse.

'Never Say Never', on the other hand, succeeds in diversifying the proceedings a little - more uptempo and featuring a very nice pre-chorus in particular. The harmonies for the chorus are also a nice touch, as are the guitar and synth runs cropping up occasionally in the song.

'Instrumental No.1' surprises me as an energetic, varied and very well executed instrumental - I say this because I don't usually like instrumentals, whereas I find this actually is one of the albums best moments. In a sense, the song is something of a flashback to the more progressive leanings of early era Lake - which of course is fine by me!

'Johnny Don't Go' sports a fairly focused chorus, but there's something about this song which simply doesn't click with me ... too generic 1980's pop style?

'Lorraine' is an uptempo and instantly catchy AOR/melodic (hard) rock tune fares much better with me: Granted - nothing new under the sun here, but the formula works well!

'Scotsman', on the other hand, veers on the corny side. However, I did enjoy James Hopkins Harrison's little visit back to his home turf - the little rap at the beginning of each verse works wonderfully to these ears, and the emulated pipes just add to the atmosphere.

The somewhat funky 'Lady Divine' is frankly not my thing at all, even if the chorus isn't half bad.

But thankfully the album's closer, 'Fight It Together', goes at least some way to remedying this. Its a slower, more balladic song, but possibly the best closing track overall on Lakes 1980's albums. Oh, and credit to Mr. Bernd Gertig for a very tasteful guitar solo at the tag end of the song.


In Summary
Knowing well that 'No Time For Heroes' remains many Lake fans fave 1980's release, I don't doubt that this is due to the fairly good flow of the songs over the course of the album. In other words, a worthy purchase for those of you into straightforward AOR/pop rock from the early to mid-1980's. On a final note: This album was released on CD in 1990 as part of the Castle Legends series, courtesy of Castle Communications.


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