Altar Boys – Forever Mercy – 1989

This was the last real studio album from Altar Boys though they did come together in 2018 to release an album. At this point they simply weren’t the punk powerhouse they once were. If anything at this point they were more new wave than punk. That said I missed this one in the 80’s and was pleasantly surprised how much I liked it. The band were super tight at this point and Steve Griffith was an excellent choice as producer. Though I preferred their commercial punk sound this album is good too.

Tracklist
1 – Forever Mercy – 4:20
2 – Listen Up – 4:28
3 – Faith! – 4:03
4 – The Meaning Of Life – 4:26
5 – Ride This Train – 4:26
6 – World Burning – 4:00
7 – Here Ends The Night – 3:53
8 – Love Eternal – 3:55
9 – More Than Words – 3:48
10 – Silent Night – 4:13

Credits
Art Direction – Ed McTaggart
Bass – Ric Alba
Drums – Jeff Crandall
Drums [Additional] – Steve Griffith
Engineer – Steve Griffith
Engineer [Additional] – Dave Jahnsen
Guitar – Mike Stand, Ric Alba
Guitar [Additional] – Steve Griffith
Harmonica – Mike Stand
Lead Guitar – Mike Stand, Steve Pannier
Lead Vocals – Mike Stand
Percussion – Jeff Crandall
Performer [Altar Boys Is] – Jeff Crandall, Mike Stand, Ric Alba
Photography – David Dobson
Producer – Steve Griffith
Vocals – Jeff Crandall, Ric Alba
Vocals [Additional] – Steve Griffith

Companies, etc.
Distributed By – Frontline Music Group
Copyright © – Broken Songs
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – Alarma Records
Recorded At – The Mixing Lab
Marketed By – Frontline Records
Glass Mastered At – Nimbus, Virginia

Liaison – Urgency – 1991

Brothers Larry and Tim Melby are back with their second album and in my opinion it picks up where the first one left off. Others however feel it has a heavier feel but everyone hears things a little different. Bill Baumgart is back in the producers seat but also gets credited as the keyboard player for the album. The album did well with 2 radio hits, “Free Will” made it to #9 and “Friend To The World” to #14. All in all it’s a great album but I feel it might have been a little late in 1991 but as I love all things eighties I don’t care.

Tracklist
1 – Urgency – 4:17
2 – Ocean View – 3:47
3 – Luwenda – 4:26
4 – Listen Up – 3:44
5 – The Hardest Part’s The Waiting – 4:59
6 – He Smiled – 4:34
7 – Lay Our Weapons Down – 4:48
8 – Free Will – 4:06
9 – All I Have To Offer You – 3:56
10 – Friend To The World – 4:28

Credits
Acoustic Guitar, Rhythm Guitar – Tim Melby
Arranged By [Rhythm Arrangement], Keyboards – Tim Heintz
Art Direction, Design – Ed Mc Taggart, Joe Potter
Bass – Kelly Burns
Drums – Doug Matthews, Vinnie Colaiuta
Engineer – Dave Jahnsen
Lead Guitar, Rhythm Guitar – Glenn Pearce
Lead Vocals, Rhythm Guitar – Lary Melby
Photography – Michael Seeley
Producer, Engineer, Arranged By [Rhythm Arrangemen], Arranged By [Vocal Arrangement], Keyboards – Bill Baumgart
Production Manager [Production Coordinator] – Beth Wisner
Vocals [Additional Vocals], Acoustic Guitar – Rick Elias

Companies, etc.
Recorded At – The Mixing Lab
Mixed At – Front Page Recording
Glass Mastered At – Nimbus, Virginia

Modest Attraction – Get Ready – 1992

Modest Attraction Featured Christian Liljegren (Narnia) and Mick Nordstrom (Leviticus) and rose from the ashes of Swedish band Borderline. This album is actually their first 2 Demos put together. These may have been demos but the production is fantastic. Mick Nordström is credited with production and this was one of the first albums he produced and he nailed it. This was only released in Sweden until 2021 when Retroactive Records did a U.S. re-release so you may have missed this one. This is without a doubt one of my favourite Metal albums I’ve reviewed yet. Everyone knows that Metal is not my preferred genre but wow this album is just so good it doesn’t matter. If you like hard rock I think you’ll like this one as its well produced and the guitar is decipherable so give it a listen.

Tracklist
1 – Action – 3:30
2 – King Of Rock ‘N’ Roll – 3:47
3 – Get Ready! – 4:31
4 – Come On! – 4:08
5 – Unfailing Love – 3:25
6 – Be Your Child – 2:40
7 – Love Shot Me Down – 4:08
8 – Calm Before The Storm – 4:47
9 – Shake The World – 3:29
10 – Down On My Knees – 4:11

Credits
Arranged By – Modest Attraction
Artwork [Album Cover By] – Jonatan Samuelsson
Bass, Vocals – Simeon Liljegren
Drums, Keyboards [Keys], Vocals – Mick Nordström
Engineer [Engineered By] – Mick Nordström, Peter Jingsäter
Executive-Producer – Matthew B. Hunt
Guitar [All Guitar Parts on Side A Played By] – Stefan Selvander
Guitar [All Guitars] – Stephan Mohlin
Layout, Design – Scott Waters
Lead Vocals, Backing Vocals – Christian Liljegren
Liner Notes – Christian Liljegren
Producer [Produced By] – Mick Nordström

Companies, etc.
Copyright © – Retroactive Records
Licensed To – Retroactive Records
Recorded At – PLC Recording Studio Hultsfred
Mixed At – PLC Recording Studio Hultsfred
Designed At – NoLifeTilMetal
Manufactured By – The ADS Group – 24379-CD-0085

Mark Heard – Dry Bones Dance – 1990

Mark Heard started the 90’s by starting his own record company, Fingerprint Records, with Dan Russell and Chuck Long. This was the first album on the label and they started out with a bang. Mark invited several guests for this album and they included Jerry Chamberlain, Sam Phillips, and Michael Been. Many Heard fans believe this is his best album and personally I must concur. I can put this one on repeat. When Mark started recording for his own label he made sure people were getting their moneys worth with his album having 14 tracks. We would only get a few more albums from Mark before his untimely death and I’m glad we got this one.

Tracklist
1 – Rise From The Ruins – 3:02
2 – The Dry Bones Dance – 3:46
3 – House Of Broken Dreams – 4:11
4 – Our Restless Hearts – 3:42
5 – Nobody’s Looking – 3:26
6 – All She Wanted Was Love – 4:19
7 – Strong Hand Of Love – 3:03
8 – How Many Tears – 2:58
9 – Lonely Road – 4:12
10 – Waiting For A Reason – 3:30
11 – Everything Is Alright – 4:24
12 – Awake In The Nightime – 3:29
13 – Mercy Of The Flame – 4:58
14 – Fire – 7:13

Credits
Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Vocals, Accordion, Harmonica, Kalimba, Backing Vocals [Assorted] – Mark Heard
Backing Vocals – Jerry Chamberlain, Pam Dwinell, Sam Phillips, Sharon McCall
Chapman Stick – Fergus Marsh
Co-producer [Associate Producer] – Dan Russell
Drums – David Birmingham
Dulcimer [Hammered Dulcimer] – Doug Berch
Engineer [Second Engineer] – Dan Reed, David Miner, Richard Tiegen
Executive-Producer [Executive-At-Large] – Chuck Long
Fiddle, Mandolin – Byron Berline
Graphics [Graphic Art] – Tim Alderson, Tom Goosmann
Mastered By – Dennis Bouch
Other [Occasional Back-Seat Driving], Engineer [Second Engineer] – Tom Willett
Other [Wagonmaster], Engineer [Second Engineer], Photography By – Joel Russell
Producer – Mark Heard
Soloist [Guitar Solo] – Michael Been
Viola – Novi Novog

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – Fingerprint Records, Inc
Copyright © – Fingerprint Records, Inc
Copyright © – Ideola Music
Distributed By – Word Ltd.
Made By – Disctronics S
Recorded At – Fingerprint Recorders
Mixed At – Fingerprint Recorders
Recorded At – Plum Studios
Mastered At – Future Disc

The Swoon – Neverland / Ben Son Ben Son Beatrice – 1990

The Swoon started out as a group of four kids who played D&D together. Only one of them had any formal music training but this didn’t stop them from forming a band and playing in a church that was Pastored by one of their fathers. After a few demo’s, name changes, and new members the band played at Cornerstone in 1988. They actually cut a deal with Wonderland records but it never worked out. The band moved to California and recorded this album in Neverland studios. It was produced by Charlie Peacock though there seems to be some debate as to his level of involvement. After the record came out Refuge agreed to help with distribution. This however would be it for the band. It was already 1990 so I’m not surprised that this was their only album as it has a pretty strong 80s feel. Anyway it’s really really good and is one you should definitely give a listen to.

Tracklist
Neverland
1 – Whose Hands Are These? – 4:17
2 – Sweet Ally – 4:38
3 – Gypsy Street Legacy – 4:09
4 – One Day The Passion – 3:45
5 – Speak Soft – 5:57
Ben Son Ben Son Beatrice
6 – I Cried Out – 5:22
7 – Let’s Talk About Love – 3:59
8 – Ben Son, Ben Son Beatrice – 5:13
9 – Square Dance Candle Light – 6:52
10 – Via Dolorosa – 2:35

Credits
Backing Vocals, Bass Guitar – Troy Baartman
Backing Vocals, Keyboards – Jeana Gillispie
Bass Guitar – Daniel Thomas
Composed By [Compositions] – Austin Dacey
Drums – Emmett Dacey
Engineer – Derri Daugherty
Executive Producer – Charles Clark
Executive Producer, Producer – Charlie Peacock
Lead Vocals – Daniel Thomas
Lyrics By – Daniel Thomas
Mixed By, Engineer – Dave Hackbarth, Greg Sotebeer
Music By – The Swoon
Other [Guy Who Does Stuff] – Mark Derby
Photography By [Cover Photo] – David Dobson
Producer, Mixed By, Backing Vocals [Additional] – James
Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards – Austin Dacey

Companies, etc.
Distributed By – Refuge Records
Distributed By – Spectra Distribution
Distributed By – Mainroads Music Group

Rosanna’s Raiders – Clothed In Fire – 1989

Australia’s Rosanna Palmer is on a par with other great female hard rock vocalists such Nancy Jo Mann (Barnabas), Wendy Kaiser (Resurrection Band), Sandie Brock (Servant), and Lisa Faxon (Ransom). Add to this her proficient guitar skills which are showcased on various tracks, especially ‘Crying in the Night’. Her husband, David Palmer, is a great bassist. Dave & Rosanna continue ministering through music and spoken word to this very day. They have performed as a duo at several of our Live at the Chapel live music events.
Clothed In Fire is the band’s second album released on an American record label. Here’s a review of this particular album by Steve Rowe (Lightforce & Mortification): – ‘When Rosanna’s Raiders release an album, you can expect a message straight from the heart of God. This is definitely the case with their latest effort Clothed In Fire. The production is world-class thanks to US producer Joey Powers who worked with the band at Grand Slam Studios in New York. The additional keyboards and back-up harmonies enhance Rosanna’s already catchy songs, making the album very memorable even after only a few listens. The highlight track is Crying In The Night – a song addressing the helplessness of children who are abused by adults. The passion of the chorus in this song is strong enough to move the hardest heart. All the songs, especially the final five, display the Raisers’ punchy Aussie hard rock at its best ever.’ (p. 32, On Being, April 1990)

Contributor – Frank Axel Rasenberger

Tracklist
1 – He Is The King – 3:54
2 – Blind Eyes – 4:26
3 – You Are Special – 4:11
4 – Crying In The Night – 4:05
5 – Hell On Earth – 4:28
6 – I’m Ready – 3:17
7 – Crazy World – 3:45
8 – Do It Right – 4:04
9 – The Loser – 3:32
10 – Love The Lord Your God – 3:56

Credits
Bass Guitar, Backing Vocals – Dave Palmer
Booking – Vic Campbell
Drums – Johno Zaffarese
Engineer – Doug Oberkircher
Engineer [Assistant Engineer] – Dan Rudin
Featuring, Backing Vocals – Carolyn Nieto, Gary Roz, Jo Clayton, Jonathan Pagano
Featuring, Guitar [Additional Guitars] – Gary Roz
Keyboards, Featuring – George Small
Lead Vocals, Guitar – Rosanna Palmer
Producer [Produced By] – Joey Powers

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – Refuge Records
Copyright © – Refuge Records
Record Company – Refuge Music Group
Distributed By – Spectra Distribution, Inc.
Published By – Place Of Refuge
Recorded At – Grand Slam Studios

Randy Matthews – Son Of Dust – 1973

Randy Matthews may be the single most important artist in Christian music that the vast majority of CCM fans have never heard of. Even casual fans of the genre are familiar with randy Stonehill, Phil Keaggy, Larry Norman and Love Song, but few can name Randy Matthews. Yet, without Matthews and his early success and ground breaking, the industry that formed may have never stood a chance. After dabbling in Southern Gospel with his father Monty (a founding member of the Jordanaires), Matthews took to a more folk rock approach and began performing in coffee shops and small concert halls building a name for himself as a songwriter and performer. His infusion of dry and biting humor in concert was legendary. As a result, Matthews became the first “rock” act to be signed to a mainline Christian label. Word Record, a label known for spoken work and Southern Gospel acts, signed Matthews and he released his debut. For his next album Word would launch the Myrrh label to provide a platform for the new “Jesus Rock” that was beginning to break through. Matthews would be seen as the “rockiest” with his more blues influenced music and Joe Cocker like rough vocals. The rest of the movement was a little softer, employing a more folk and country driven sound. This would haunt Matthews and ultimately cause a disillusionment with Christian Music. In fact, while touring in support of Son of Dust, Matthews appeared at a large outdoor Christian music festival. The audience was more accustomed to the Love Song acoustic folk style and Randy’s raucous rock cause such an uproar that their instruments were unplugged and were chased off the stage by the crowd. With tongue firmly planted in cheek, Matthews would later release an album called “Plugged In” where that story would be recounted. Fans of The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Joe Cocker, Van Morrison and Larry Norman will find much to appreciate on this album that is now considered a true classic of Jesus Music. On Son of Dust Matthews addresses more political, spiritual and emotional issues than what his contemporaries were willing to look at. Relationships, sin, society and the whole of life are addressed with an honesty that would not be seen very often in the industry until the 1980’s. The album is also noteworthy for the studio version of Matthews most memorable and time tested classic. Didn’t He. The story of the crucifixion is, in this reviewers opinion, the very best contemporary song written on the subject. Matthews emotive and scratchy voice delivers an unforgettable emotional experience. Matthews pounds his acoustic guitar for every time the hammer hits the nail and that sound hits the heart. One cannot listen to this song without some sort of emotional connection. If there is ever a list to be done of the greatest songs in CCM history this must be among the Top 5! Amongst the great albums of Jesus Music history, this is a must have and an unquestionable AYSO!

Contributor – David Lowman https://ccms500bestalbums.wordpress.com/

Tracklist
1 – Holy Band – 3:25
2 – The Bad Has Made It Better – 2:45
3 – It Ain’t Easy – 2:42
4 – Mighty Fine – 2:25
5 – Brown Eyed Woman – 4:46
6 – Here I Am – 3:22
7 – On The Road – 2:50
8 – Evacuation Day – 2:30
9 – Didn’t He – 5:40
10 – Pharaoh’s Hand – 3:17

Credits
Arranged By – D. Bergen White
Art Direction, Photography By – Bill Grine
Banjo – Robert Thompson
Bass – John Williams, Tommy Cogbill
Drums – Jerry Carrigan, Kenny Buttrey
Engineer – Rex Collier, Rick Horton, Tommy Semmes
Guitar – Billy Sanford, Charlie McCoy, John Christopher, Randy Matthews, Reggie Young
Keyboards – Bobby Wood, David Briggs
Keyboards [Moog] – Rick Powell
Mastered By – Tom Semmes
Percussion – Farrell Morris, Jerry Carrigan
Producer – Billy Ray Hearn
Recorded By – David McKinley, John Brandon
Saxophone – Bill Puett
Steel Guitar – Lloyd Green
Vocals – Bergen White, Billy Ray Hearn, Randy Matthews, Rick Powell
Written-By – Randy Matthews

Companies, etc.
Recorded At – Woodland Studios
Mastered At – Woodland Studios

Per-Erik Hallin – Morgonluft – 1985

This was Per-Erik’s second album and as near as I can tell it was only released in Sweden. His first album had been released in Sweden, Europe, and the United States on Refuge Records. I don’t know why Refuge didn’t pick up this album because I think it’s even better than his first. It might have been because it had 3 tracks in Swedish but that’s only a guess. Anyway as I said this album is even better than his first. In fact the lead track “S O S” is as good if not better than anything on the radio at the time. It is a fantastic song that will be going into my regular rotation. The most interesting track is “The Glorious Outfit” in that he actually takes a stab at rap. While the rap is questionable the chorus is fantastic. To tell the truth I can’t decide if I hate or love the track, it’s one of the other.

Tracklist
1 – S O S – 4:32
2 – Morgonluft – 2:53
3 – Movin’ On – 3:54
4 – Cabbage Patch Kids – 3:32
5 – Att Vänta – 3:57
6 – Labyrint – 2:56
7 – Forgiven – 5:19
8 – Fågelsång – 3:45
9 – The Glorious Outfit – 5:27
10 – Open Up Your Heart – 3:11

Credits
Arranged By [Horns] – Anders Neglin, Glen Myerscough, Lars Brandström
Arranged By [Synthesizer], Arranged By [Cello] – Anders Neglin
Engineer – Frank Von Dem Bottlenberg, Lennart Ström, Niklas Flyckt, Thomas Gertz
Engineer, Mixed By – Peter In De Betou
Graphics, Design – Camilla B. Tryck
Other [Craving] – Peter Strindberg
Painting [Oil] – Janeric Johansson
Photography By – Lennart Dannstedt
Producer, Arranged By, Written-By – Per-Erik Hallin

Companies, etc.
Copyright © – Royal Music Productions
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – Royal Music Productions
Recorded At – Studio Bastun
Recorded At – Arco Studios
Recorded At – OAL Studio
Recorded At – Park Studio
Recorded At – KMH Studios
Lacquer Cut At – Cutting Room
Printed By – SIB-Tryck AB, Norsborg
Pressed By – Skandinaviska Grammophon AB

Will McFarlane – Right From The Start – 1982

Will’s early music career was certainly one that has to be respected. He played with Bonnie Raitt’s band from 1974 to 1980. I can only imagine the stories he must have as if you didn’t know Bonnie was quite a hard rocker in those days. Not her style so much as her life. Anyway Will left the band in 1980 on amicable terms as he wanted to settle down with his wife to a more normal life. He moved to Muscle Shoals and took up with the legendary Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section. In that same year he found Christ and embarked on a new career as a Christian musician. In 1982 he ended up with a deal from Refuge Records and released this album. This album has an excellent 70’s feel and Will gave us many more albums where he showcases his talent.

Tracklist
1 – Number One Command – 3:58
2 – This Is The Message – 2:24
3 – You Call Me A Dreamer – 4:12
4 – That Your Grace May Abound – 4:08
5 – Faith Is Not A Formula – 4:06
6 – Set Your Heart On Things Above – 4:12
7 – Carry On Soldier – 2:58
8 – Where You Gonna Run To – 4:04
9 – Now That You’ve Heard The Truth – 3:26
10 – Who I Am In You – 4:50

Credits
Will McFarlane – Producer, Songwriter, Guitars, Vocals
Gary Baker – Bass
Mickey Buckins – Percussion
Carol Cabler – Background Vocals
Keith Compton – Engineer
Linda Sue Davis – Strings
Craig Duncan – Strings
Ronnie Eades – Sax
Ralph Ezell – Bass
Mark Feldman – Strings
Owen Hale – Drums
Roger Hawkins – Drums
Joey Holder – Background Vocals
David Hood – Drums
Clayton Ivey – Fender Rhodes
Lenny LeBlanc – Background Vocals
Lonnie “Butch” Ledford – Bass
Glenn Meadows – Mastered
Steve Moore – Engineer, Mixed
Steve Nathan – Piano, Keyboards
Wayne Perkins – Songwriter
Ken Perry – Mastered
Earl Spielman – Strings
Paul Tobias – Strings
Jerry L. Wallace – Producer, Fender Rhodes, Synthesizers, Percussion, Roto Toms, Background Vocals
Martha Wiggins – Strings
Kristen Wilkinson – Strings

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – Refuge Records
Copyright © – Refuge Records
Distributed By – The Benson Company, Inc.
Recorded At – East Avalon Recorders
Mastered At – Masterfonics

Kim Boyce – Love Is You To Me – 1989

It was 1989 and time for another winning album from Kim Boyce. I truly believe that Kim was better than Amy Grant but was just a little to Pop oriented so she didn’t get the worship crowd to listen to her. It was another successful album for Kim with 4 top 40 hits including 2 top 10’s. “Faith” made it to #6 and “For Every Lonely Heart” to #10. Now I do have one point of confusion on this album. Bryan Duncan was brought in to do a duet, “I’m Asking You” for the album. They did not release it as a single and it is by far the best track on the album. Maybe it was something to do with legalities or maybe just more bad decisions out of the industry but they missed a #1 song there in my opinion.

Tracklist
1 – Holdin’ My Hand – 3:46
2 – For Every Lonely Heart – 4:01
3 – Love Is You To Me – 3:37
4 – Dancin’ My Heart Away – 4:06
5 – Faith – 3:48
6 – Tender Heart – 5:03
7 – Best Friend – 3:32
8 – O Lord You’re Beautiful – 4:50
9 – I’m Asking You – 3:37
10 – It Always Comes Back To You – 4:06

Credits
Ken Allardyce – Assistant Engineer
Margaret Barnett – Choir Vocals
Paul Boone – Choir Vocals
Dave Boroff – Saxophone
Denny Bouchard – Songwriter
Kim Boyce – Songwriter, Vocals, Background Vocals
Nicole Bruce – Choir Vocals
Sharon Burton – Choir Vocals
Spencer Campbell – Electric Bass
Kristina Clark – Background Vocals
Claire Cloninger – Songwriter
Denny Correll – Songwriter
Bryan Duncan – Guest Vocals
David Ebensberger – Engineer
Angie Ebensberger – Choir Vocals
Dan Garcia – Engineer, Mixed
Keith Green – Songwriter
Michael Hodge – Guitar
Imperials – Duet Vocals
Win Kutz – Mixed
Rhett Lawrence – Producer, Arranger, Engineer, Songwriter, Keyboards, Bass, Drums, Fairlight CMI, Background Vocals
Brenda Marshall-McClure – Choir Vocals
Mark Maxwell – Executive Producer
Oscar McClure, Jr – Choir Vocals
Carrie McDowell – Background Vocals
Craig Miles – Choir Vocals
Tim Miner – Producer, Engineer, Songwriter, Vocal Arrangements, Keyboards, Background Vocals
S. O’Brien – Songwriter
Becky Pearce – Choir Vocals
Jimmie Pearce – Choir Vocals
Cindy Cruse Ratcliff – Background Vocals
Dona Robinson – Choir Vocals
John Andrew Schreiner – Arranger, Songwriter, Keyboards
Phil Sillas – Songwriter, Arranger, Synth Bass, Keyboards
Tommy Sims – Bass, Guitar, Background Vocals
Luis Chi Sing – Assistant Engineer
Jimmie Lee Sloas – Songwriter, Arranger, Keyboards
Brian Tankersley – Producer, Executive Producer, Mixed, Songwriter, Background Vocals, Drums, Percussion, Synth, Bass, Keyboards, Arranger
Don Wallace – Vocal Arrangements, Background Vocals
B. Weaver – Songwriter
Kirk Whalum – Saxophone
BeBe Winans – Songwriter

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright ℗ – Word, Inc.
Copyright © – Word, Inc.
Distributed By – Word Records Limited
Distributed By – Word (Uk) Ltd.
Manufactured By – Word, Inc.
Recorded At – GBT Studio, Hollywood
Recorded At – Oakshire Recorders
Recorded At – Knightlight Studios
Mixed At – Bill Schnee Studios
Mixed At – Knightlight Studios
Mastered At – Bernie Grundman Mastering