Category Archives: Guest Post
Today we do a little something different on goJimmygo. Jim and I, Kat from Kat’s Theory of Music, thought it would be a kick to both review the same album, but guest post on each other’s blog. We have been anticipating the release and have been pushing each other to do the review. In the end we decided to both do it. The CD to be reviewed is “Never Too Late” by Jimi Jamison.
Jimi Jamison, is best known as the frontman of Survivor, Cobra and Target, as well as a veteran solo artist. This latest album, released through Frontiers Records, was written expressly for him by Swedish wunderkind Erik Martensson. As a member of the European groups Eclipse and W.E.T., Martensson has gained a reputation as the go-to guy when you want your record to be well written, well produced and basically, well done.
Full disclosure: Jim and I are both fans of Jamison and we’ve had the pleasure of meeting him on more than one occasion. If this album was really bad…well I don’t think either of us would be writing the review. But it’s good, real good. I haven’t read a bad review of it. With that being said, it’s still fun to break it down track by track. Since Jim is a musician, his take on it will be different from what I absorb as a writer/music lover only. So read my review, then jump over to my blog and read Jim’s.
Here we go:
Everybody’s Got A Broken Heart: Bang…right out of the gate. Great tempo. Martensson has created a huge wall of sound. After listening to the album a few times, the one word I feel defines his producing technique is precision. Clean, clearly defined producing…it seems every note, every riff is thought through. This opening track is well put together, the vocal suits Jamison to a tee. It would be hard to find a reason not to like this song or why it’s not in the running to be released as a single down the road.
The Great Unknown: The opening notes of this song remind me a bit of Survivor’s “Can’t Give It Up.” But then Jamison voice explodes into all grit and fire…time to catch a ride. I’ve always enjoyed listening to how he interprets a vocal…this is a really nice example. The song itself has a great hook, from start to the real fun ending, it’s all good.
Never Too Late: Ultimate uplifting song. Caution: you will have the chorus in your head all day. Along with a great video, it has a great vocal, great hook, it’s just an overall spot-on balance of vocal and music production. Good choice as a first release, as it’s easily the most commercially viable song on the album. Has everything a hit should have…getting airplay is another thing.
Can’t Turn Back: If this was the 80’s, this song would be blaring out of radio stations non-stop. In this, Martensson has written a song for Jamison that plays to his strong suit…a ballad where he bounces between power vocal and marked restraint. Great haunting fadeout to the song.
Street Survivor: An electronic start into a rock anthem. It’s an interesting insertion to the CD. The rest of the album focuses mainly on the love found/love lost theme, with a few inspirational tracks thrown in, and I guess this might fit into the inspiration group, but it gives me the feel of one of Survivor’s finer songs, “Rebel Son.” The feeling of doing what you need to take on the world. A gutsy and strong rocker.
The Air That I Breathe: More of a traditional ballad, it starts with a easy feel and clear vocal before letting Jimi’s vocal chops shine through. Former Survivor bandmate Jim Peterik once commented about Jamison’s range when he’s really zoned in. He called it the Jamison yodel. As he hits some of the notes in “The Air I Breathe”, you can hear the yodel in full force. A real nice ballad.
Not Tonight: “Someday I might miss you, but not tonight.” Yeah, so who wasn’t felt that way. An underlying infusion of pop, but you can’t beat the chorus. The only issue I have on the album’s production is the backing vocals on this track. And honestly, that’s a little picky. The second half of the song sees the backing vocals become a little heavy handed. That being said, it’s still one of my favorite songs on the album.
Calling the Game: Although I’m sure it was his intent, but the writer in me hears a few too many clichés in Martensson’s lyrics. Musically, the song works. It’s well paced, catchy and Jamison’s vocal brings it all together.
Bullet in the Gun: Beginning with a beautiful piano intro, it quickly jump starts into full rocker mode. Interesting reverb ending creates and eerie fadeout….really well done.
Heaven Call Your Name: Haunting is the only word I can use to describe this. Jamison fully interprets the pain of loss. The stripped down organ intro only fuels the desperation of the lyrics. The kind of song where after you hear it you think…whoa. The use of Jamison’s younger daughter on background vocals adds to the ethereal quality; adding a female voice really provides the perfect sensitivity.
Walk On (Wildest Dreams): No doubt right from the start, this one is gonna punch it out. It finishes off the album repeating the theme of reaching for more in your life. A strong end to what is one fine album. As a whole, there isn’t a bad track on the album. Everything that was promised by having Erik Martensson command the project, was delivered. There is a reason he works non-stop on successful projects, one after another…he’s that good. To write an entire album where the material so acutely matches the singers’ ability is not an easy thing to do. To further produce and play most of the instruments, and not lose sight of the big picture is brilliant.
But aside from having good material and an intuitive producer, you still need the guy to deliver the goods. After all these years, Jimi Jamison is still at the top of his game. The voice has naturally morphed into a richer tone. And while he can still hit the high notes, as a singer he has learned that phrasing and reserve creates a much more solid and interesting vocal. In other words, he still rocks and rocks hard. If melodic rock is your passion, give in to the desire and buy the album. It’s exciting as all hell.
For Jim’s review, go to Kat’s Theory of Music
My daughter Jillian, a ten year old aspiring writer herself, penned today’s post. Enjoy!
“Sweetheart, breakfast is ready!” Mom would call from downstairs. “Be there in a second!” I would say. My mom is a great cook that’s why I admire her! My magnificent mom is lovable, glamorous, and helps me tell the truth!
My snugly bunny is very lovable! If I’m ever scared or sad she’ll snuggle with me and of course that makes me feel better! If were ever watching a scary movie, I’ll hide in her arms or under the blanket and she’ll say “Why are you so scared?” I’ll try to tell her the reason and she’ll snuggle! She will always say sorry. Sometimes my mother and I play tickle monster/ fight. If she accidentally hurt me she’ll feel really bad and say sorry, I would never say I didn’t forgive her.
My mom is nice to everyone she meets, if somebody needs help she’ll offer to, once a person lost their dog by it running up the street. My mom saw the dog while she was driving and she slammed on the breaks and got the dog, put it in the car and drove away to its owner. The owner was so happy that my mom caught the dog! My mom was so proud!
Cameras the lights THE fashion! My mom is glamorous, she is like America’s Next Top Model, and she always matches! OH NO there’s green and brown, that doesn’t match, black and green (The perfect match) “Black goes with everything!” she says! When me and my mom are in a hurry or late for the bus, she always makes things match. Once it was 7:05 and she still needed to take a shower. She got a shower, dried her hair, put her make up on, and made the most nicest outfit. It was a nice pretty pink flower shirt with white Capri jeans and some nice sandals! My mom always picks the best style…EVERYDAY! She always has something to touch it up! I love her sense of style.
My mom influences me to stand strong settle arguments and be strong willed! One day when me and my mom went to the park, a bully came up and said “Hey give me your snack!” I ignored him and walked away! Sometimes when somebody is being mean to me or my friend I’ll stand strong stick up for my friend and I will kill the bully with niceness. That’s what my mom told me to do. She settles my arguments.
“Well Mommy has to go to work now. Time to get in your pen”, she would say. I put on my best sad face and walk in. Sure I’m sad but I’ll see her when she comes home. I may live a dogs life, but I still admire my mom.