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Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Music Review: Loverboy - "Unfinished Business" CD

Canadian 80's hit makers Loverboy return with their first full album of "new" material since 2007's "Just Getting Started."

"Unfinished Business" could not be more appropriately titled since some of the songs on the album come from writing sessions that date back 40 years!  

The album kicks off with "Fire Me Up" which features a classic Paul Dean guitar lick and sounds like it could have been included on their sophomore outing "Get Lucky."  Next comes "Counting The Nights" with pure 80's sounding keyboard intro courtesy of Doug Johnson and only Mike Reno can make a line like "Open up your eyes, take a look around, do us both a favor, split town" sound cool instead of cheesy.

Next up is "Ain't Such A Bad Thing" which chugs along with a great sing-a-long chorus that will have you tapping the dashboard and drumming on the steering wheel for sure. After 3 rockers we get a nice mid tempo ballad with "Come Undone" and then back to rocking as drummer Matt Frenette kicks "Slave" into high gear. Frenette's drumming coupled with Dean's guitar work make this straight ahead rocker sound like a Van Halen outtake as Dean and Matt prove they could give Eddie and Alex Van Halen a run for their money.

Not every song is a keeper and the two that come to mind are "War Bride" and "Doin' It The Hard Way." "War Bride" seems a little overblown while "Doin' It The Hard Way" is literally filled with cliched lyrics and maybe these two should have been left unfinished.

The album closes out with two strong cuts. First, "You Play The Star" which opens with an Asia inspired prog-rock keyboard intro and then turns into a song that would have fit perfectly on the band's self-titled debut album. The last track is "Crack Of The Whip" which closes out the album with yet another classic sounding Loverboy tune.

The majority of the songs on this album are filled with big hooks and catchy choruses therefore"Unfinished Business" succeeds in doing exactly what it was meant to do... it gives the hardcore Loverboy fans some songs they have always wanted to hear while reminding everyone else why we loved these leather clad MTV darlings in the first place.

Here's hoping Loverboy continues their recording career and maybe next time we'll get some new business!

Drumroll please... 7 out of 10 drumsticks!!!

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