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Melodic Rock Round-up: August 2015

Dave Ling on new releases from Trixter, Degreed, Michael Bormann, Kelly Keeling and Room Experience

Trixter: Human Era

From comments made in their electronic press kit, the members of Trixter share our disbelief that their band continue to exist. Formed in New Jersey 32 years ago, the hair-metal quartet enjoyed a number of hits and sold a million records before being unceremoniously washed down the plughole by the Seattle revolution. “Nirvana wiped out our whole genre and we didn’t even see it coming,” guitarist Steve Brown told Classic Rock when Trixter regrouped in 2007./o:p

That unselfconscious naivety helps to make the band tick, and the quality of their comeback disc, New Audio Machine, took many by surprise, being one of the best melodic releases of 2012.

Trixter’s fourth album of original material, Human Era is all about fun. The band joke that its concept dates back to the pre-internet days when enjoying those long summers was what gave them their kicks. That its YouTube track is called Rocking To The Edge Of The Night says everything you need to know about a band that recognises its strengths and simply refuses to stop smiling. (810)/o:p

Degreed: Dead But Not Forgotten

Formulated around their quite amazing lead singer, Robin Ericsson (a former Swedish Idol finalist), Degreed keep on getting better and better. Brilliantly produced and containing 14 expertly crafted but deliciously varied melodic hard-rock gems, the quartet’s third album is the handiwork of a group standing on the cusp of great things. (810)

Michael Bormann: Closer

Via spells with Jaded Heart, Bonfire, Zeno and others, Michael Bormann has a long and distinguished CV in rock music. However, appearing in Germany’s version of The Voice has brought him to a whole new audience. It should come as no surprise then that this often pop-flavoured set includes the likes of Warrior, the Demi Lovato song that Bormann performed on the show. (610)

Kelly Keeling: Mind Radio

Kelly Keeling is best known for membership of Baton Rouge, Heaven And Earth and Blue Murder, as well as his work with Michael Schenker and John Norum. He hands the production of this third release to Alessandro Del Vecchio of Revolution Saints fame. Despite an acceptable start, it contains some real turkeys during its latter stages, notably the awful Monkey House. (510)

Room Experience: Room Experience

Pooling various alumni from the Italian acts Lionville, Charming Grace, Wheels Of Fire and Shining Line with a frontman of some repute – Englishman David Readman of Pink Cream 69/Voodoo Circle – Room Experience offer textbook West Coast-flavoured AOR that’s characterised by soaring choruses, parping keys, cheesy lyrics and all of the trimmings. They’re great! (810)/o:p