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Dan Reed Network: Fight Another Day

Has it REALLY been 25 years? Well, that is indeed how long it has been since the Dan Reed Network released their celebrated Bruce Fairbairn produced album The Heat in 1991, which should have taken them to superstardom but ultimately saw the band get disillusioned with the music industry and disband until a handful of reunion concerts since 2012 prompted them to get back into the studio for what we now have in front of us, Fight Another Day. It's no surprise that this new plater of melodic rock/AOR/funk/pop/hard rock finds itself on Frontiers Records, the powerhouse Italian label that have scooped up many major '70s & '80s acts who still have plenty of new music for their dedicated fans. The 2016 version of the band includes Dan Reed (Lead Vocals, Rhythm Guitars, Piano, Synth Programming, Moog Bass), Brion James (Vocals, Lead and Rhythm Guitars, Synth Guitars, Synth Programming, Drum Programming), Dan Pred (Drums, Percussion, Videographer), Melvin Brannon II (Vocals, Bass, Acoustic Bass, Electric Contra Bass, Synth Bass), and Rob Daiker ( Vocals, Keyboards, Synth Programming, Drum Programming).

With soaring pop hooks, plenty of synths, and a mix of hard rock & funk grooves, the format hasn't changed all that much for the Dan Reed Network in 25 years, but that's surely going to make a lot of people very happy. With 13 tracks, there's a lot to take in here, but instantly accessible & memorable fare like "Champion", "Divided", "Give It Love", "Eye of the Storm", and "The Brave" grab you from first listen and inject your brain with melodies that stick like a computer virus. "Stand Tall" reminds a bit of Genesis' more pop based '80s material, loaded with bubbling synths, plenty of groove, and layers of vocal harmonies, easily one of the most engaging tracks here. As mentioned, there are a lot of songs on Fight Another Day, and probably a few too many soft ballads, but overall much of the album succeeds thanks to an overabundance of memorable hooks and crisp arrangements. It's not heavy by any means, or barely a blip on the prog meter, but as far as '80s styled pop, melodic rock, and AOR, this return from the Dan Reed Network is certainly a keeper. And, that cover art is certainly pretty cool too!

Track Listing
02.The Brave
06.Give It Love
07.B There With U
08.Save The World
09_Eye of the Storm
12.Sharp Turn
13.Stand Tall

Added: June 23rd 2016
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 2037
Language: english

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» SoT Staff Roundtable Reviews:

Dan Reed Network: Fight Another Day
Posted by Simon Bray, SoT Staff Writer on 2016-06-23 07:43:43
My Score:

I've always had more of a leave it than take it relationship with Dan Reed Network especially given that I am the least funky middle-class white guy you could ever wish to meet. I managed to get through the whole of their initial career dismissing them as irrelevant to my life and as not really being rock music. I've grown up a lot in the last twenty-five years.

I couldn't agree more with Mr Pardo's assessment above about the way in which the opening one-two punch of "Divided" and "The Brave" grab the attention immediately but I'd like to fly the flag for "Infected" which is a real grower displaying social conscience whilst remaining resolutely funky and imbued with a real groove. I'd also like to give some love to "Heaven" which is just lovely and typifies the upbeat, sunny nature of a surprisingly welcome return for the DRN.

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