John Taglieri – Lucky #9

Lucky #9 is unsurprisingly the ninth release from singer / songwriter John Taglieri, an artist who has forged a good name in AOR, Americana and country tinged rock. Over this side of the pond arguably he is yet to make that break through to emulate his recognition but with Lucky #9 one feels it is only a matter of time.

The six track release is a varied and expertly crafted collection of songs written alone and with co-writers in Nashville and New Jersey. The tracks are heartfelt and passionately brought forth to ensure one is never left unattached at any point. Co-Produced by Lee J. Turner (Darius Rucker, Jewel, Leann Rimes, Bo Bice), the album is an expressive piece of melodic rock which those  with more appreciation for the genre will fully wrap themselves up in.

Starting with a feistier melodic rock stance brought by Losing Me, the release immediately grabs an eager attention. The song is infectious without being addictive but still ignites strong pleasure to its strikes of resourceful guitar play and fiery melodic enterprise. It also offers a bass which gives nothing but delicious invention throughout here and through the album, and all combined makes for a song which is an easy and pleasing companion to the ear, by far the best track on the release.

The following I Never Knew takes an easier gait into its heart with further strong riffs and melodic craft. There is a strong Bon Jovi essence , something which is present across much of the release and leaves from personal taste a less rewarding taste though one can only recommend and praise the songwriting and skilful artistry behind this and all the songs.

Without You continues on from its predecessor with fine accomplished play whilst  Dying Alive and Make Me Believe court melodies and show expressive songwriting which is superior to many other similarly flavoured releases elsewhere. Again the songs are finely crafted and brought with a sure charm and emotive power which is impossible not to be marked by and even though the overall sound is not the treat our ears respond to generally, the tracks still left one on a slight high.

The closing Not Gonna Be My Life does not quite find the heights of the previous tracks but is still a more than decent piece of country drizzled soft rock. It finishes off a strong and creative release which admittedly will find a better reception and home elsewhere but it is clear to see the impressive and cultured skill of artist and songwriting. If melodic soft rock is your feast then make a straight line to Lucky #9 from John Taglieri, you will only find full pleasure.

RingMaster 07/08/2012

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