Thursday, September 13, 2012

Review: Hess “Living In Yesterday”

Melodic hard rock

Harry Hess, the throaty voice behind the phenomenal but now defunct hard rock outfit Harem Scarem, returns with his second solo effort, “Living In Yesterday” (not counting his excellent work as First Signal in 2010, reviewed here). Recorded at his Toronto studio, the songs included on “Living in Yesterday” are the result of Hess’ travels around the globe over the last few years with stops in Stockholm, Amsterdam, Brussels, Nashville, and Germany. Hess has no shortage of superstar guests contributing on the new record, including his former bandmates Pete Lesperance, Creighton Doane and Darren Smith, Tommy Denander, Marcie Free (Unruly Child), Howie Simon and Magnus Karlsson among others.

Hess set out with the goal to make some more great melodic rock music – just one listen to the new record makes it clear he’s achieved that goal once again. After all these years, consistently churning out one great slab of melodic rock after another, it still amazes me that Hess is not a household name. “Living In Yesterday” pumps out a continuous stream of top quality rock anthems, which is all I ever expect from Hess. Considered together, this collection of tracks reminds me of Brian Howe-era Bad Company. While no song is bad, some of the major standouts include the radio-friendly “Don’t Leave Me”, the driving rocker “Nothing Lasts Forever”, the groovy and contemporary “I Don’t Wanna Want You”, and the encouragement anthem that is the title track. If you enjoy power ballads, there are many here for your playlist consideration, including “It’s Over”, “What If”, “I Live For You”, and “Where To Run”.

Did you miss our 2010 interview with Harry Hess? Check it out here.

Hess – Official site.

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