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Articles: 1988 Articles

220 Volt - 1988 Eye To Eye
'Eye To Eye' was arguably their best album, combining a sound which integrated the best bits of Return, Def Leppard and Europe. Added to the mix was the production work of Max Norman. You can tell these boys have benefitted from Mr Normans handywork. Listen to those awesomely mixed drums for example! Now thats what I call a drum mix!

38 Special - 1988 Rock & Roll Strategy
Despite including their biggest single, 'Rock & Roll Strategy' did not set the album charts alight. In certain quarters a school of thought emerged that it was a step down in quality, more accurate would have been a step sideways.

4 Reasons Unknown - 1988 4 Reasons Unknown
A talented Dallas Texas based band who had more in common with the hi-tech/AOR sub-genre going on during the mid 80's rather than pure driven Texas boogie!

Abel Ganz - 1988 The Dangers Of Strangers
Scotland's Abel Ganz spent the better part of their career in the shadow of IQ, Marillion and Pallas. 'The Dangers Of Strangers' is a stylish neo-progressive rock album and a classic of its time.

AC/DC - 1988 Blow Up Your Video
While some would argue that Brian Johnson's croak is part of AC/DC's charm and appeal I'm not buying it. 'Blow Up Your Video' is a batch of mostly strong hard rock tunes, well played but poorly sung.

After All - 1988 How High The Moon
This is a one-off Canadian outfit with an interesting sound that should appeal to many readers here. They combine a melodic rock/AOR style with an alt rock style that blends beautifully. Think Boulevard, New Regime, Silent Running, Tuesday Blue with Tomorrows Child and Lions And Ghosts.

After Hours - 1988 Take Off
Moving in the same vintage direction as fellow countrymen Baby Tuckoo, Tobruk, FM and late 80's Whitesnake guaranteed success on a musical level, but not sales wise.

Aidean - 1988 Promises
Coming at you from the Bonfire and Pretty Maids school of riffarama, they are the archetypal European melodic rock band, with a big sound and a heavy handed approach.

Aina - 1988 Living In A Boys World
Scandi lovers should acquire this rare effort as it really is quite good. Wild Force deliver us superb Scandi based melodic rock in the mould of Treat, Skagarack, Bad Habit and Bon Jovi.

Alien - 1988 Alien
Consummate melodic rock from this Swedish outfit which really did cause a stir in 1988, as did just about every other notable Swedish outfit from that era.

Anabis - 1988 Theatre
Weighing the CD's AOR moves against its fusiony classicism; 'Theatre' is as fine example as any of the softer end of the German prog rock spectrum circa 1988.

Annica - 1988 Badly Dreaming

She only released this one album. And in the same era of one-off albums from the 80's, she had a name which started and ended with an A, was super gorgeous to boot, and joins GDM's two other favourite ladies Aina and Alexa in this exclusive group.

Anthrax - 1988 State Of Euphoria
'State Of Euphoria' arguably, was not one of Anthrax's better albums. It was a painful slide into reality considering how good their previous set 'Among The Living' was..

Arthur's Museum - 1988 Gallery Closed
Bit of a rarity this one, and if it wasn't for the fame that followed guitar prodigy Richie Kotzen, this one could've sat on a dusty shelf somewhere in middle America.

Ashton - 1988 Modern Pilgrims
Mark Ashton (real name Mark Ashton Vey) is an English singer who released two albums in the 80's, this one being his second (and last). 'Modern Pilgrims' appeals readily to fans of 80's AOR and melodic rock, but unfortunately it didn't move many units.

Baby Blue - 1988 American Boys
Very much from the indie scene of the mid-late 80's. Self released - cassette only it would appear, Buffalo's Baby Blue had the cliches down pat, and were more than a little copy-cat in style, though with the occasional high-point.

Bad Company - 1988 Dangerous Age
By 1988, Bad Company had become a fully fledged AOR outfit, the Mark II era of the band changing significantly from their 70's stomping ground..

Balin, Trace - 1988 Champions
An excellent, dare I say, bombastic sounding AOR album, with references to Amy Grant and Robin Beck.

Bell, Maggie - 1988 Crimes Of The Heart
Admittedly, this album is nowhere near Maggie Bell's preferred blues rock genre, instead this is as hi-tech AOR as you can get.. A fish out of water? Perhaps..

Black N Blue - 1988 In Heat
This band were much better than this album. Give this a wide berth and go back and listen to the first two albums at least.

Blind Owl - 1988 Debut At Dusk
Blind Owl were a Boston based band with a fair dose of progressive tendencies. Many comparisons have been thrown at them; ELP, Yes, Genesis etc, but the closest would be debut album era Asia and 'Opening Act' era Stencil Forest.

Blue Oyster Cult - 1988 Imaginos
When is a BOC album not a BOC album? That is the question. The answer? Easy.. try 1988's 'Imaginos' for starters.

BLVD - 1988 BLVD
The well loved AOR band BLVD are perhaps the most unluckiest Canadian band never to strike it big. They had the talent, skills and the material to go all the way.

Bon Jovi - 1988 New Jersey
Listening to this again years later, I am compelled to grudgingly admit that this was a damn fine piece of work for 1988. Possibly because of their superstar status during this timeframe may have seen me apply the tall poppy syndrome unfairly to Bon Jovi, and also the fact that the band were highly overexposed and saturated in radio and TV. For what it's worth, a great album that deserves a lot more respect.

Bond, The - 1988 Prints Of Peace
Forever tied to the hip of British prog merchants Twelfth Night, the late Geoff Mann also had a brief spin with his band The Bond.

Bonoff, Karla - 1988 New World
Listening to 'New World', this is an ambient affair, beautifully arranged songs with plenty of subtle keyboard layers that blend in well with Ms Bonoff's incredible voice. For readers of this site, Ms Bonoff comes highly recommended.

Brannen, John - 1988 Mystery Street
The album is a glossy affair strangely enough, taking a leaf out of the pages written by Jimmy Davis and other country-rock crossover acts of time. Vocally, there's a bit of Jeff Paris, Paul Laine and Jon Bon Jovi, but really John can sing to suit the occasion.

Briar - 1988 Crown Of Thorns
Love the cover on this one but man, plop it on the turntable and prepare to be disappointed.

Brighton Rock - 1988 Take A Deep Breath
Another fine Canadian act are Brighton Rock, bordering on that fine edge of heavy metal, but exceptionally good melodic rock nonetheless.

Bullet Boys - 1988 Bullet Boys
The band's entrance into 1988 was good one, the album going gold soon after. Strangely, the band took ages to release a follow up; 1991's 'Freakshow', but by then all momentum had been lost, even though the band continued on with a turnstile of personnel from the mid 70's onward.

Cannata - 1988 Images Of Forever
This album is not as bombastic as 'Arcangel', but still has masses of appeal to the typical AOR fan. Jeff Cannata has taken a few pages of the Yes songbook a la '70125' and 'Big Generator' and rewritten them for himself. 'Images Of Forever' a hybrid of hi-tech AOR, pomp and modern prog tendencies which Cannata would further explore on later albums.

Cellarful Of Noise - 1988 Magnificent Obsession
Cellarful Of Noise is essentially Avsec's solo work, played in a hi-tech synth fashion. Jonah Koslen was quoted as saying Avsec was a 'bit of a synth slut..', and so it shows on this album. Sometimes the results don't quite come off, in comparison to the work he's known for elsewhere.

Champion - 1988 Halfway To Heaven
Here's another purist AOR LP that should've been reviewed ages ago. Ohio's Champion - not to be confused with the Canadian outfit of the same name, only hung around long enough to issue the one LP for Quicksilver Records..

Cheap Trick - 1988 Lap Of Luxury
After the disappointment of 1986's 'The Doctor', Cheap Trick are high on the rebound with 1988's 'Lap Of Luxury', going double platinum and yielding four hits.

Cheeters, The - 1988 Sign Of Life
I don't think you could call The Cheeters a bonafide AOR band. They do crossover into other genres, but their brand of pop rock should appeal to most here at GDM.

Chicago - 1988 Chicago 19
If you only know the hits and never bought the '129' album, I recommend an investment in this little beauty, some very rewarding AOR discoveries await you.

China Sky - 1988 China Sky
Formed by ex Danny Joe Brown Band guitarist Bobby Ingram, China Sky have a very smooth and commercial flavor to their sound, no doubt helped by the melodic helping hand of producer Bob Marlette. In fact in most places it sounds nothing like a southern band, with lovely melodic guitars and lush keyboards coming through the mix rather strongly.

Chosin Few - 1988 Chosin Few
This is pretty much typical melodic hair metal at the hard rock end of the spectrum. Chosin Few originate from Huntingdon Beach California, the same beach-babe hangout of fellow melodic metallers Leatherwolf.

Church, The - 1988 Starfish
The release of their fifth studio album 'Starfish' in 1988, it was recorded in Los Angeles with the unlikely duo of west coast session players Waddy Wachtel and Greg Ladanyi as producers. The album's sound was unlike any other Church album before it. Atmospheric, spacious and uncluttered.

Cinderella - 1988 Long Cold Winter

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These boys were regulars in magazines such as Hit Parader and Circus during the late 80's. By the time this CD was out, Cinderella were already in the big leagues.

Colortone - 1988 Colortone
Colortone offered nicely highly synthesized pop music, and despite its Midwest roots, the band owes much to Duran Duran and INXS.

Comedy Of Errors - 1988 Comedy Of Errors
Scottish band Comedy Of Errors were a product of the day sounding close in style to other neo-pgor outfits of the era: namely Abel Ganz and Pallas.

Concrete Jungle - 1988 Wear And Tear
New York band Concrete Jungle are well overdue a mention on this site, probably for the wrong reasons rather than the right.

Craaft - 1988 Second Honeymoon
I will make this declaration, and say that Craaft's 'Second Honeymoon' is one of the finest melodic hard rock albums coming out Germany. Period.

Dare - 1988 Out Of The Silence
Formed as an outtake by Darren Wharton after the demise/retirement of Thin Lizzy. A wonderful moment in UK AOR and a band that could have gone places had they stuck to the same gameplan and not got carried away by the hype.

De Young, Dennis - 1988 Boomchild
At his best DeYoung is the consummate showman, although at his worst his sense of theatrics can border on the kitsch (e.g. 'Kilroy Was Here' being a step too far for me). 'Boomchild' is compelling evidence of the man at the top of his game and an album I play as regularly as anything he produced in his heyday with Styx.

Descars - 1988 Descars
Descars are the Montreal duo of Stephane Caron and Serge Lacasse. Hi-tech percussive pop rock with a little bit of everything thrown in..

Diamond In The Rough - 1988 Diamond In The Rough
Diamond In The Rough is pure 80's pop/AOR, and is a reminder of how things sounded back then - and was an outfit bought together by Lewis Nitikman and David Buckthorp.

Dirty Looks - 1988 Cool From The Wire
The late Henrik Ostergaard was the instigator for longtime rockers Dirty Looks. We take a look at their major label debut for Atlantic, 1988's 'Cool From The Wire'..

Drew, David - 1988 Safety Love
Californian based David Drew is a one-man-does-all in the vein of Aldo Nova, by the looks of things. Not only does he sound like his idol Billy Idol, he even plays guitar like Steve Stevens.