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Neon Alley: Neon Alley

Having in the past worked with respected vocalists such as Robin McAuley (McAuley Schenker Group) and James Christian (House Of Lords), guitarist David Vaccaro steps up to the mic (and plays keyboards) with his new power trio, Neon Alley, rounded out by bassist Mike McDonald and drummer Scott Marion. This self titled effort is their debut and a whole lot of fun it is too. The band themselves describe their approach as modern classic rock, and they're not too far from the mark, although I'd suggest upbeat, good time blues rock covers it equally well.

Unlike so many albums, Neon Alley hits the ground running, the thunderous riff and driving drums of "That's How It Is" providing the album's best sing along chorus as McDonald and Marion grind the groove for all its worth – it's a stunner! "All I Want" adds a more commercial edge, the AOR side of Sammy Hagar (although with less keyboards) a strong comparison, before a reworking of the Elvis standard "Jailhouse Rock" takes the bones of the much loved track, blueses it up considerably and then spins it around with a gleeful glint in its eye. In truth, it's simple stuff, but boy is it effective, the uptempo rock infused with some scintillating guitar solos and a bottom end that keeps everything powering along nicely.

If there's a worry then it might just be that Neon Alley have possibly shot their bolt too early. The danger of their lights suddenly fizzling out however is allayed as the clever electric/acoustic "I Only Want To Be With You" and its accordion refrain changes tack completely. It's a wonderful shift back down through the gears, adding a classy Beatles like shimmer in its melody and mood. A blues shuffle easily catches the ear on the memorable "Let Your Lovin' Come Down", while "Piece Of The Pie" brings a 70s like push and shove to proceedings, a rumble of Status Quo meets Creedence Clearwater Revival the outcome. The neat one-two of "Got To Rock" and "'Til I'm Done" bringing an album that's short enough to immediately leave you wanting more, to an end.

Neon Alley are as far from cutting edge as it's possible to be, an unkind ear possibly suggesting that on occasion things can almost become a little obvious. However I have to admit that from the very first time this CD hit my player I've been singing along, playing air guitar and hammering out the grooves to every song. Ground breaking they may not be, but Neon Alley are something much more exciting than that… they're damn good fun!

Track Listing
1. That's How It Is
2. All I Want
3. Jailhouse Rock
4. I Only Want to Be with You
5. Let Your Lovin' Come Down
6. Piece of the Pie
7. Got to Rock
8. 'Til I'm Done

Added: December 10th 2016
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Neon Alley on Facebook
Hits: 2079
Language: english

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» Reader Comments:

Neon Alley: Neon Alley
Posted by Mike Niles on 2016-12-11 11:42:55
My Score:

Great review of a very good CD. There's something about this album that is delightfully infectius.
After a few listens, you'll be singing along and playing it loud while driving along.

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