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FM: Atomic Generation

What with the release of copious EPs, re-recording their own Indiscreet debut and even going as far as to release a full, separate, accompanying album to 2013's Rockville full lengther (cunningly titled Rockville II), it seems like FM have been constantly at work since their surprise 2007 return. Maybe they see this second bite at the cherry as simply too good not to grasp with both hands, but the other factor about all of those releases is just how universally excellent they've been. As UK eyes have wandered towards Scandinavia for their melodic rock fix, their very own FM have throughout the last decade been possibly the best example of what the genre has to offer. Back in the day the band were similarly afflicted by a preoccupation with anything from the Sunset Strip, but unlike in the 80s, FM have stayed true to their hearts and refused to waver from a sound that they simply thrive in creating.

It might get a little boring to say it, but Atomic Generation continues that trend of being top line AOR and melodic rock, while also being possibly the band's strongest offering to date or at least since they returned. Having one of the premier voices in rock has never hurt of course and rest assured that Steve Overland is in fine fettle, the trademark 'whoooaaaahs!' that introduce the thrum and hum of "Black Magic" leaving no doubt that we're in safe hands. The song itself bumps and grinds and adds a little funky undertone that FM have long had an eye for, before "Too Much Of A Good Thing" nods in quite sublime style, to the AOR of the band's early days. However, just as you think, so far so (excellent) FM, "In It For The Money" pomps it up, reminding of a more melodically inclined Magnum as a grinding riff is pulled straight from the bag marked Clarkin classics. However it's "Playing Tricks On Me" which offers up the album's biggest surprise, guitarist Jim Kirkpatrick's guitar tone and touch taking us into the world of Santana! With the bass groove master that is Merv Goldsworthy booming through the bottom end and occasional brass stabs adding to the vibe, while FM have long shown a hankering for something more soulful, funky and groovin', this may well be as 'out there' as they've gone. And yet, with "Make The Best Of What You Got" bouncing along as though Bad English had been resurrected, and "Stronger" (and its Bon Jovi/Little Angels keyboard intro pastiche courtesy of Jem Davis) being a brooding but punchy rocker, the classy asides are merely there to augment the more expected, and expertly executed FM-isms. Add in the more balladic "Do You Love Me", which if I'm not mistaken is a reworking of a track by The Ladder (a band that featured Overland and FM drummer Pete Jupp), and you really have in the shape of Atomic Generation, everything you could want from an FM album. That in itself is the biggest compliment you can pay it.

Track Listing
1. Black Magic
2. Too Much Of A Good Thing
3. Killed By Love
4. In It For The Money
5. Golden Days
6. Playing Tricks On me
7. Make The Best Of What You Got
8. Follow Your Heart
9. Do You Love Me Enough
10. Stronger
11. Love Is The Law

Added: March 17th 2018
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Atomic Generation @
Hits: 1729
Language: english

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