Now 3-plus years since the release of the first Heavy Rock Radio covers set, acclaimed hard rock/metal vocalist Jorn Lande is back with part two in this series, titled Heavy Rock Radio II-Executing The Classics for Frontiers Records. This time around, the singer shoots for remakes of some '80s pop fare and some lesser known 'hits', and of course does a great job as always in what is another fun listen. Don Henley's "New York Minute" is given a darker, heavier treatment, and it works, while Bryan Adams' upbeat "Lonely Nights" also soars with Jorn behind the microphone. A real surprise is "Winning", made popular by Santana but written by none other than Russ Ballard, the Latin influences exchanged for hard rock muscle. While songs such as "Love", "I Do Believe in You", and "Needles and Pins" are pretty foreign to this writer, in the hands of Jorn the results are memorable, and Foreigner's "Nightlife" rocks hard and checks off all the right 'anthem' buttons, the guitars of Tore Moren & Jgor Gianola providing plenty of crunch and sizzle. Kind of cool for Lande to pick "Bad Attitude" from Deep Purple, not exactly a radio staple back in the day but certainly one of the more memorable songs from House of Blue Light, and he does a fine job hitting on some Ian Gillan tones while the band crank up the organ driven hard rock behind him. "Quinn the Eskimo (The Might Quinn)" is a lot of fun, and of course John has to throw in a cover of a classic from his hero Ronnie James Dio, in this instance the choice is "Mystery", done with plenty of love, his vocal style always having that Dio styled edge anyways. Capping off the album is a super-charged rendition of Peter Gabriel's "The Rhythm of the Heat", almost unrecognizable if you don't pay close attention, the metal guitars jacked way up and Lande's vocals soaring to the heavens.
All in all, just like part one, Heavy Rock Radio II-Executing The Classics is hardly essential but a blast to listen to, and any Jorn Lande fan will certainly want to check this out and hear his interpretations of some well known & more obscure hits from yesteryear.
- Lonely Nights
- New York Minute
- Needles And Pins
- I Do Believe In You
- Bad Attitude
- Quinn The Eskimo (The Mighty Quinn)
- The Rhythm Of The Heat