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Angels Or Kings: Kings Of Nowhere

Much though AOR is thought of as an American preserve, the UK has always had a signature AOR sound, which to these ears has always been naïvely superior. That's maybe an odd way of wording it, however for me the UK bands who followed this path were always slightly, and refreshingly, less suave than their starred and striped cousins, yet all the better for it. So what has this all to do with Angels Or Kings, I hear you grumble? Well with a heritage that runs back to 1988 and a sound that would make Dare, No Sweat, Shy and even Tobruk weak at the knees, AOK, as they were back then, have finally gained the record deal that eluded them way back when and delivered their debut album some 26 years down the line. So with AOR Heaven backing them, original members Tony Bell (guitars), Rob Naylor (bass), Steve Kenny (guitars/keys) and Andy Chemmey (drums) have hooked up with new singer Barrie "Baz" Jackson and delivered, in the shape of Kings Of Nowhere, a corker.

Every department in this band works seamlessly together to create something of real value and class, with Jackson's Darren Wharton (Dare), Joe Elliott (Def Leppard) meets Richard Marx delivery injecting a real sense of power and purpose to a set of songs positively bursting to be heard. In fairness there's a ton of Scandie bands spending every waking hour crafting this sort of stuff and yet AOK's rougher, dare I say, "Britishness" carries them through, making some tried and tested ideas thoroughly engaging. It would be a stretch to suggest that there's anything new in the keyboardtastic "Another Lost Boy", the Bryan Adams/Def Leppard tinged slowie "A Night Like This", or the pleasingly No Sweat meets FM of "If Her Tears Could Talk" and yet with top rate performances from all concerned, a crackingly clear mix and more energy than you could shake your tail at, there's simply no denying Angels Or Kings hit the nail squarely and fairly on head. Impressively, even with a reasonably lengthy running time for this for this style of release, at no times does Kings Of Nowhere sag, or slack off in the quality department and equally admirable is that repeat listens don't reveal many chinks in this album's armour either.

A well received opening set at the final Firefest (they won a fan vote for best unsigned band – which they were at the time) and with a slot at this year's Hard Rock Hell to come, things appear to be on the up and up for Angels Or Kings. On the evidence of Kings Of Nowhere, it's easy to hear why.

Track Listing
1. A Harder Place
2. Ice Turned to Rain
3. Real Life
4. Same Star
5. Someone To Save Me
6. Left Me In Love
7. A Night Like This
8. Another Lost Boy
9. Same Old Love
10. If Her Tears Could Talk
11. Kings of Nowhere

Added: October 31st 2014
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Angels Or Kings online
Hits: 1767
Language: english

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