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Lion – Trouble In Angel City [1989]

Country USA          

Style Hard Rock

Rating 87/100

Band Members Douglas Aldrich – Guitars, Jerry Best – Bass, Kal Swan – Vocals, Mark Edwards – Drums

Tracks 01. Come On (5:58), 02. Lock Up Your Daughters (3:34), 03. Can’t Stop The Rain (3:40), 04. Love Is A Lie (4:44), 05. Victim Of Circumstance (3:48), 06. Stranger In The City (5:17), 07. Hungry For Love (4:26), 08. Hold On (4:00), 09. Lonly Girl (1:40), 10. Forgotten Sons (5:46)

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Profile “Lion” originally released in 1989. The band is commonly recognized as the collaboration of American guitar prodigy Doug Aldrich (“Hurricane”, “Dio”, “Whitesnake”) with British vocal titan Kal Swan (“Tytan”, “Kuni”) (hence the flags on the front cover).

On a personal level, I have to comment that “Trouble in Angel City” is probably my favorite hard rock album of 1989 because it combined incredible songwriting -track after track-and immense performances on all instruments. One could not overlook that the same year bands like “Whitesnake” and “Vain” put to tape some of the genre’s most iconic performances, still “Lion”‘s final album, dare-I-say, slightly surpasses them.

First of all, “Trouble..” finds Doug a more mature, technical and flamboyant guitarist, clearly developing in the guitar hero most are aware of today, his style on “Trouble..” comes very close to that of Vito Bratta and Michael Sweet. Kal Swan is a vocalist at the top of his game, in his over the top epic style of singing, confidence plays the biggest part and the singer has tons of it. One would go as far as saying that on “Trouble…” he is at the same level (not sound) as Kip Winger and David Coverdale. (Although the vocal approaches of the latter two vocalists have been copied/incorporated by singers that followed them, there still seems to be no one to quite match the very characteristic vocal attack of Kal Swan)

Perhaps the album’s greatest achievement is the fact that at no point does it deviate from the up tempo melodic hard rock/glam metal; most would agree that commonly glam metal albums would incorporate elements/songs of AOR, blues rock etc, but “Lion” is from the opening track `Come on’ to the closing `Forgotten Sons’ thoroughbred melodic hard rock. Standout tracks? Absolutely all, “Can’t stop the rain”, “Victim of Circumstance”, “Hold on”, “Forgotten sons”, “Lock up your daughters”, all this is material that unquestionably stands the test of time- a true classic of the genre.

By Nikiforos V. Skoumas

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Rating: 9.5/10 (2 votes cast)
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Lion - Trouble In Angel City [1989], 9.5 out of 10 based on 2 ratings
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