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Articles: 2003 Articles

40ft Ringo - 2003 Funny Thing
Needless to say, the long-awaited debut album, 'Funny Thing' is as explosive and infectiously melodic as any album you will hear all year, retaining all of the addictive power of the demos that have circulated quite widely since word spread about the band.

A.C.T - 2003 The Last Epic
Having built a cult following among both progressive rock and melodic rock fans with their debut and sophomore releases ('Today's Report' and 'Imaginery Friends' respectively), A.C.T. have gotten as far as that notorious third album. This time around, they have expanded what were conceptual sections on their previous albums, into a full fledged concept based long player.

Aftermath - 2003 Natural Destruction
'Natural Destruction' is the culmination of eight years hard work for these New Jersey hard rockers. With a background comprised mainly of 80's rock influences..

Alkemyst - 2003 Meeting In The Mist
Alkemyst has the speed and melody of Edguy, wonderful full choruses like Kamelot and progressive touches like Pagan's Mind and Fates Warning.

American Hi-fi - 2003 The Art Of Losing
Like so many bands that achieve success with their first album, that all-important sophomore record comes around sooner or later. After relentlessly gigging in support of their well-received self-titled debut, American Hi-Fi finally got around to recording that crucial follow up. And although it may be titled 'The Art of Losing', it's clear that this record should be the band's equivalent of a winning ticket.

Amethystium - 2003 Aphelion
Do yourself a favour by chilling out to this when AOR and hard rock becomes a bit too much and you require a change of scenery.

Anand - 2003 Joy 4 Ever
Dutch guitarist Anand has a style that is similar to the sonic metal/bluesy approach taken by Greg Howe back in the late 80's.

Andersson, Richard (and Space Odyssey) - 2003 Embrace The Galaxy
Most people have a love/hate relationship with a certain Mr Yngwie Malmsteen. If you are in the 'hate' section then don't even bother to continue reading as this album is unashamedly Malmsteen influenced, fuelled by duelling neo-classical guitars sweeps and keyboards.

Ankhara - 2003 Sombras Del Pasado
It is from the Locomotive stable that Ankhara rides, a band that's actually released two albums before their latest release 'Sombras Del Pasado'.

Arena - 2003 Contagion
UK prog metal/rockers Arena return with 'Contagion'..

Artension - 2003 New Discovery
Many articles on the internet credit the band as a progressive metal act, but their music owes more the the huge metallic drive of Yngwie J Malmsteen and his ilk than it does to Dream Theater or Threshold.

Astral Doors - 2003 Of God And The Father

Astral Doors - like The Darkness - care not for musical fads or in vogue hip. They're happy to be defiant and fly the flag for old school rock music. But, unlike The Darkness, these guys are completely novelty free, completely in tune with their art and fantastic ambassadors for a classic metal sound.

Atkins, Al - 2003 Heavy Thoughts
The name Al Atkins will be familiar to heavy metal loyalists, he was Judas Priest's original vocalist. 'Heavy Thoughts' was originally recorded in 1995 for Priest's original label Gull, only to be shelved, before enterprising UK label Market Square Records rescued it, at last letting it see the light of day.

Attraction 65 - 2003 Attraction 65
Funnily enough, there's a certain attraction with Attraction 65, and so it proved with Swedish label Atenzia landing a big fish last year with this Tennessee based band. The fact that this album just so happens to contain the melodic rock song of the year so far, with the absolute sensational 'In Another Life' adds to the attraction. What the hell gives??? Read on..

Autograph - 2003 Buzz
Best left tot the 80's, you're best bet is to procure the first three studio albums between 1984 and 1987, and remember the band in their prime, rather than this crap.

Aviary - 2003 Ambition [Review #1]
Fans of overblown pomp rock, particularly from the era of the late seventies and early eighties, will have no problems picking out their favorites. Perhaps the most underrated and mightiest of them all was an American band originally from Washington state called Aviary.

Aviary - 2003 Ambition [Review #2]
With the release of 'Ambition', it's only about to get even better! Delving into their considerable vault of recordings from the period 1975-19729, 'Ambition' features 11 previously unreleased songs, all but one recorded during the band's years in Los Angeles.

Axenstar - 2003 Far From Heaven
If the likes of Supreme Majesty, Twilightning and Orphan Gypsy get you going then Axenstar are worth a good listen.

B.I.S.S - 2003 Joker In The Deck
This is the second BISS album, featuring new lead singer Michael Bormann, replacing previous singer Fernando Garcia.

Bad Boy - 2003 We Should've Been Dead By Now
While they recorded two new tracks for a best of cd in 1998 and released an EP in 1986, this is the first full length studio record from Wisconsin AOR giants Bad Boy in 129 years.

Balance Of Power - 2003 Heathen Machine
BOP have kept to the tried and true formula that we've come to expect. Perhaps a little darker in places. Pete and Bill are still monsters on their guitars. It's their tone that is one of BOP's most distinctive features.

Barros - 2003 Gemini
In a previous life, these guys were called Tarantula. Hailing from Portugal, that country's stocks of rising melodic rock talent seems to be on the rise. Paulo (the band leader here) has moved the band into late nineties hard rock, a la Guild Of Ages, though without the same finesse.

Basics, The - 2003 Bitter/Sweet
The Basics are less about AOR and melodic rock, perhaps more about straight-ahead middle-of-the-road rock leaning toward the sixties era. If we take a healthy portion of mid-west jangle, and add a side-dish of southern fried raucous, then you end up with a style of music that The Basics indulge in.

Black Label Society - 2003 The Blessed Hellride
Perhaps the most recognisable feature of Zakk Wylde as a musician and performer, apart from his exuberance and all out ability to kick some serious ass on stage, is his unmistakable guitar sound. He picks up from where he left off with Ozzy Osbourne.

Black Majesty - 2003 Sands Of Time
Black Majesty have been compared to Iron Maiden, Jag Panzer and Queensryche. You will hear a bit of everything throughout this album, even bits of Gamma Ray, and most of it is near on perfect.

Blackmore's Castle - 2003 A Tribute To Deep Purple And Rainbow
This tribute CD comes to us from Finnish label Lion Music, who specialise in Progressive Metal, a genre Ritchie Blackmore was indeed an early pioneer of, his style rubbing off on many of the bands featured here.

Brazen Abbot - 2003 Guilty As Sin
Though Nikolo Kotsev released his Nostradamus back in 2002, filled with fellow Brazen Abbot members, it has been 6 long years since an official Brazen Abbot release.

Britny Fox - 2003 Springhead Motorshark
Musically 'Springhead Motorshark' still keeps to the fairly brash hard rock the band are known for. Though they've still got their feet planted somewhat in the past, it's less in the late 80's and early90's than perhaps the 70's with a number of the tracks having a retro feel with a modern twist.

Cage - 2003 Darker Than Black [US Edition]
They've been promising that the follow up to the critically acclaimed 'Astrology' would be a monster. Well, they are not wrong about that. The San Diego natives Cage have stepped up to the podium alongside their major influence Judas Priest, and other Priest-like outfits such as Primal Fear.

Celtic Legacy - 2003 Resurrection
Celtic Legacy are fantastic, forging a potent blend of Ten/Pride/Thin Lizzy/Gary Moore styled melodic hard rock with plenty of Irish attitude and traditional melodies.

Charon - 2003 The Dying Daylights
'The Dying Daylights' showcases Charon at their most melodic and accessible. Charon effortlessly bridge the gap between 80's goth rock, melodic hard rock/metal and modern hard rock.

Coastland Ride - 2003 Coastland Ride
Making a splash on the melodic rock/pop scene for 2003 are Swedish trio Coastland Ride. It's a pleasant excursion which travels around the fringes of West Coast, AOR, and melodic Euro-pop.

Coastline - 2003 Coastline
For those of you who have been with this website for a long while, you will have surely come across our ramblings on the Swedish band Coastline. Long considered a favorite by GDM, as well as our sister sites LA-Nites and AOR Dreamzones.

Coenen, Marcel - 2003 Guitartalk
Despite my usual misgivings about guitar instrumentals, Mr Coenen has managed to sway my attention with this effort. Again, not too different from what a lot of other axe-slingers are doing, but the appearance of tunes like 'Inner Alchemy' and 'Endless' makes this one stand out more than most.

Condition Red - 2003 II
To be honest I found listening to Condition Red's latest effort quite hard going. For the simple reason it crosses so many musical boundaries, that it's hard to pigeon-hole.

Conspiracy - 2003 The Unknown
Conspiracy's music is a hybrid of latterday Yes , the solo material of Trevor Rabin. As well, there is a faint jangly pop flavor evident on some of the tracks, while on others, the prog tendencies from Billy Sherwood's World Trade days comes sweeping across the soundscape like a heavy prog induced blanket.

Constant, The - 2003 Darkly Sunny Days
The Constant are a trio of rockers from Van Nuys California, who have ignored a lot of what is modern and 'happening' on radio, and have decided to hang-out in 'Retro City' for a while. Revolving around the heavy riffing guitars of Frank Yanno, you'd swear we've wound the clock back to an era where the likes of Mountain and Led Zeppelin were steaming up the windshield of your best friends Chevy on many a wet wintry night.

Cornerstone - 2003 Once Upon Our Yesterdays
This time around, 'Once Upon Our Yesterdays' takes on a slightly heavier tone. It has rougher edges, and is not as smooth as per the material we heard on 'Arrival'.

Crimson Rain - 2003 Passion And Pain
Crimson Rain look like they should be playing rock like Blink 182 or 3 Days Grace, not the accomplished classic rock that you'll find on their debut album 'Passion and Pain'. Having listened to this pretty classy effort it is no surprise that Neil Zaza decided to give these guys a hand.

Dakota - 2003 Deep 6
Dakota are in the process of making all their 70's/80's music available to their fans through a series of ongoing cd reissues, but still found time to record a brand new album in 2003.

Dakota - 2003 Lost Tracks/The Last Standing Man [Reissue]
This 2 x CD set is a combination of the 'Lost Tracks' and 'Last Standing Man' albums.

Dando, Evan - 2003 Baby I'm Bored
Solo album from former Lemonheads member Evan Dando.

Danzi, Danny - 2003 Danziland
'Danziland' is a fantastic display of American melodic hard rock. The New Jersey native has taken it to another level with phenomenal guitar work, infectious song-writing and a much better production.

Dark Moor - 2003 Between Light And Darkness [ep]
As you read this, Dark Moor has undergone some major changes. Since the recording of 'Between Light and Darkness' three of Dark Moor's members - Elisa, Albert and Jorge - have left due to musical differences. So, this special edition album/extended EP is the last you'll hear from this version of Dark Moor.

Dark Moor - 2003 Dark Moor
If you are not familiar with Spanish melodic metallers Dark Moor, you could be fooled by the self titling of the album that this is their debut, and in some ways it is. The band have actually released a number of albums since 1999, but this is their first since the departure of three key personnel, including their singer. So, for this line-up it is their debut.

Day, Jo - 2003 No Warning
South African female rocker Jo Day has come a long way since her early 70's debut 'One Woman', reinventing herself in the mould of Joan Jett and building a hotshot band around her. In fact, she now insists that Jo Day is a band, not a solo star with backing.

Deasy, Bill - 2003 Good Day No Rain
Thanks to the ageist attitude of record companies and label execs who generally welcome 36-year-old singer-songwriters with the same level of enthusiasm as a bout of SARS, artists such as Bill Deasy have almost been threatened with extinction.

Deep Purple - 2003 Bananas
So, if it's a bunch of classic rockers that you're after, then look no further. It ain't exactly new nor original, but what the hey?

Delp And Goudreau - 2003 Delp And Goudreau
Following Boston's 'Corporate America' failure, many fans have been pinning their hopes on this, the latest collaboration between ex Boston guitarist Goudreau and sometimes vocalist Delp, to bring some respect back to the increasingly tarnished name. Unfortunately, this is not the album to do it..

Demon Drive - 2003 Four Play
If there is a example of a German band flying close to the wind of modern/alternative rock styles then it would have to be Demon Drive. Rather than being lumped into the generic German hard rock genre where you all but disappear into a crowded soup, they now stand out out on their own playing a style that's distinctly different but familiar at the same time.