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Articles: 1986 Articles
Emerson Lake And Powell - 1986 Emerson Lake And Powell
When Emerson and Lake pursued the idea of a reunion in 1985, the final piece of the jigsaw (Palmer) was already committed, so the drum spot went to hard rock vet Cozy Powell, who had previous stints with Rainbow and Whitesnake up to this point. His recruitment added bulk to the ELP sound, which ironically excluded guitars; Emerson's keyboard taking center stage!

Europe - 1986 The Final Countdown
For Swedish band Europe, this was without doubt their breakthrough effort. After two prior efforts, 'The Final Countdown' was their launching pad into the big time.

Export - 1986 Living In Fear Of The Private Eye
Export didn't really hit their straps until they signed a deal with CBS/Epic. This resulted in the excellent 'Contraband' album during 1984. For a comparison of their sound, think along the lines of outfits such as debut album era Strangeways or Fastway.

Farnham, John - 1986 Whispering Jack
Musically, 'Whispering Jack' is perfect 80's radio fodder, helped by the OTT keyboard and programming work of LRB band-mate David Hirschfelder. Also joining the fold was (future) guitar god Brett Garsed. It was easy to see how and why this album became so huge.

Fate - 1986 A Matter Of Attitude
Probably one of the best Danish albums to be released. Only problem is.. it sure don't sound Danish!

Fates Warning - 1986 Awaken The Guardian
'Awaken The Guardian' has been labelled as one of the best progressive metal albums of all time. In fact, the FW team were way head of their time with this effort..

Fixx, The - 1986 Walkabout
The Fixx along with a handful of others were part of the color splashed brigade of 80's pop back in the day, which many punters will remember from the golden era of MTV..

FM (UK) - 1986 Indiscreet
Light and breezy AOR, and surprising poppy for this South London band. However, the FM band direction came about due to the obvious success of the harder melodic rock acts such as Europe, Def Leppard, Bon Jovi.

Foster, Jim - 1986 Power Lines
Canadian musician Jim Foster is perhaps better known through his association with the Alberta based outfit Fosterchild (hence the band name). This outfit had been in existence since the mid 70's. By 1986, Jim had landed a solo deal with RCA, with 'Power Lines' being the resulting output, with Rick Springfield and Stan Meissner used as reference points.

Frazier, Rob - 1986 This Town
Round two for CCM/AOR artist Rob Frazier.

Frontiers - 1986 Front Page
From the mid 80's era of Europe and Treat, comes another melodic rock pretender: Frontiers.

Gabriel, Peter - 1986 So
In 1986 and after 4 exceptional solo albums as well as the soundtrack to the film 'Birdy', Gabriel found himself to be an honest goodness superstar with 'So', buoyed by the massive single 'Sledgehammer' and its groundbreaking video.

Giuffria - 1986 Silk And Steel
Then there are some albums which many people rate, while others wonder what all the fuss is about. For me, Giuffria's 'Silk And Steel' is one such album.

Glass Tiger - 1986 The Thin Red Line
Mention Canadian hard rock during the 80's and a few names crop up. One that hasn't been mentioned here is the Ontario based Glass Tiger. You remember them right?

Golden Earring - 1986 The Hole
Underrated and under loved, Golden Earring's 1986 'The Hole' proved that this long running Dutch outfit knew how to roll with the times, with a typical 80's sound complete with synths and digital drums.

Grace, Graham - 1986 Shining Knight
With no less than five keyboard players, this is a synth-happy platter and with all the state of the art gadgetry and ear-numbing production values that were so common place in 1986.

GTR - 1986 GTR
This is what we get when we mix two of prog rock's supreme guitarists together. The colloboration of Messrs Howe and Hackett certainly got the rock fraternity a buzz back in 1985/86 and life after Yes/Asia and Genesis for both guitarists became a lot more interesting.

Haywire - 1986 Bad Boys
A perfect example of mid-eighties Canadian AOR. Haywire are playing a smooth style, mixing elements of The Arrows, Honeymoon Suite and Loverboy.

Helstar - 1986 Remnants Of War
An American outfit from Houston Texas, who typified the influence put upon them by bands such as Iron Maiden and Judas Priest.

Huey Lewis (And The News) - 1986 Fore!
I'd forgotten over the years just how great this album is. Sure, I'd frequently hear the big hits still on radio, but there is very little dropoff between the number one hits and the rest of the songs. This album didn't have quite the sales success of 'Sports', even though it had more hit singles that went even higher on the charts. And I consider it to be even stronger overall than 'Sports', which is pretty high praise. But it still sold around four million copies. One of the best albums to emerge from the 80s.

Idle Cure - 1986 Idle Cure
Idle Cure remain one of the top-tier Christian acts to have appeared during the eighties/nineties. Originating from Long Beach California, these guys have perfected the quintessential sound of melodic rock and AOR, combining many influences from their secular cousins on bigger labels.

Idle Tears - 1986 Idle Tears
Idle Tears are occupying the same sort of territory as Face To Face, Scandal, Wild Blue and Delta. They are stuck in that mid 80's mind-set of AOR where things tended to be over-produced and overblown, and in Idle Tears case, they bought four producers to the mixing desk. Overkill perhaps?

Idol, Billy - 1986 Whiplash Smile
It was one of my most played albums of 1986. In an era where Bon Jovi and Europe ruled the airwaves, it was the mighty 'Blonde One' that did it for me. 'Whiplash Smile' was an incredible album really.

Illusion - 1986 I Like It Loud
Illusion's sound is radio friendly, but heavy handed as well, perhaps a precursor to a band like Tesla, melodic but with some rough edges around the fringes.

Iron Maiden - 1986 Somewhere In Time
That aside, 'Somewhere In Time' is the perfect example of heaviness and melody being merged, without losing musical identity. Maiden were still a metal band, even if there were murmurs of discontent from some fans.

Jameson, Nick - 1986 A Crowd Of One
It's a case of 'one man does it all', and so it seems the album title 'A Crowd Of One' is an appropriate label for one time Foghat bassist and producer Nick Jameson. He serves a tasty brew of hi-tech AOR and pop/rock, caught somewhere between Tim Feehan and other artists of the same ilk.

Jett Black - 1986 Night Flight
This is actually an above average set of AOR which is a lot more listenable than much of the poor high tech AOR that seemed to be infiltrating the scene in 1986.

Johnson, Don - 1986 Heartbeat
At the height of his fame as Miami Vice's 'Sonny Crockett' in 1986, Don Johnson landed himself a record deal with CBS/Epic. While 'Heartbeat' is not AOR the whole way through, there are several tracks which fall under the banner, more than making it worthy of inclusion at GDAZE.

Journey - 1986 Raised On Radio
'Raised On Radio' is a fine record in retrospect, but it was severely hurt by the long delay before it's release.

Judas Priest - 1986 Turbo
Of all the Judas Priest discography, this is perhaps the least played album I have. 'Turbo' is not totally removed from the aural bombast from their previous two albums, but if fans were looking for an extension to the HM staples of 'Screaming For Vengeance' and 'Defenders Of The Faith', then they would be hugely disappointed.

Jungklas, Rob - 1986 Closer To The Flame
'Close To The Flame' is designed for the big radio and MTV market, though the music on the LP is not totally representative of Jungklas' true style. I would describe it as 'hard AOR', but it also has an earthy element to it too.

Kansas - 1986 Power
A great return, despite the different direction. However, with three classic tracks under the one roof ('Power', 'Three Pretenders' and 'Tomb 129') you can't go wrong.

Karat - 1986 Funfte Jahreszeit
'Funfte Jahreszeit' was another AOR success for Karat, and well deserved. Together with Omega and FSB, they form an essential trifecta of AOR from the iron curtain.

Keene, Tommy - 1986 Songs From The Film
Overall there is some lovely melodic pop/rock here, probably less in the power-pop stakes, but there is enough here for PP fans to sink their teeth into. Certainly, 'Music From The Film' is well worth the exploration for both power pop and AOR fans!

Kick Axe - 1986 Rock The World
So what of the songs on 'Rock The World'? I reckon they sound great. Put it this way, I enjoyed them far more than the previous two albums.

Killer Dwarfs - 1986 Stand Tall
'Stand Tall' - to me, has a lot in common with L.A band Great White, maybe a little bit of Ratt and also Lion (musically, not vocally).

King Kobra - 1986 Thrill Of A Lifetime
1986 saw L.A commercial metal hopefuls King Kobra turn their hand to AOR. I reckon it was a pretty good attempt despite industry indifference and public apathy.

Koo De Tah - 1986 Koo De Tah
Back in the mid 80's, the UK had The Eurythmics and Thompson Twins. America had Cock Robin, Denmark had Laban. In Australia's case, they had a band called Koo De Tah? Koo De who? I hear you ask..

Kooga - 1986 Across The Water
I think these guys were previously called Preacher, and not Cougar as some would assume. They first came onto the scene in 1981, originating out of the misty valleys of Wales.. better known for producing world class rugby players rather than melodic rock musicians.

Krayz - 1986 Dreamer
From upstate New York, Krayz deliver an interesting hard rock indie platter, which combines tight/tough hard rock with some keyboard touches.

Krokus - 1986 Change Of Address
Although Krokus constantly still find chart success in their native Switzerland, this album was their final fling in terms of worldwide success, but to my mind they bailed out with their best..

Laban (Denmark) - 1986 Caught By Surprise
Thanks to Daz, one of the GLORY-DAZE regulars, I had the pleasure of listening to a Danish duo Laban, a group who espouse everything that is 80's synth pop!

Ladder, The - 1986 The Ladder
Along with Aviator, another great rocking band from New York which surfaced in 1986 were The Ladder. Classy, and laced with a heavier than usual dose of melodic rock among the predominant AOR grooves this band generates.

Lake - 1986 So What
'So What' would prove to be the final Lake album, not counting the compilation 'In the Midnight' and various later collections. In contrast to its predecessor 'Voices', 'So What', however, saw the band returning to a more conventional rock sound.

Lamb, Brent - 1986 One Man
For pure hi-tech AOR that is well enjoyed by the brethren here at GLORYDAZE, 'One Man' comes highly recommended.

Le Mans - 1986 Le Mans
Le Mans did release one album on the Shrapnel label in 1983, 'Out On The Streets', which was very heavy metal. It wasn't a bad effort, but somewhere in between the boys have done serious listening time to Journey and Def Leppard and lightened up big time with this effort three years later.

Lebow, Martee - 1986 Crimes Of The Heart
If you like melodic rock in the mould of Fiona and Celine Dion circa her 'Unison' album, then American singer Martee Lebow might be the sort of artist to follow up on.

Legs Diamond - 1986 Land Of The Gun
A good album, closer to pure melodic rock/AOR than most with an emphasis on synths, keyboards, organ etc, but not enough to put off purist LD fans from the glory days..

Lion - 1986 Power Love
Here's the first official recording from Los Angeles based Lion.

Little River Band (LRB) - 1986 No Reins
No Reins' is the third and last installment of the Farnham era of LRB. For this album, the singing is shared between Farnham and Nelson, an extremely good singer in his own right!
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