Third album out in four years by Stockholmers BAD RADIATOR, now that proves they’re a busy bunch of guys! This time they stick to the path taken on the 2nd album, “Shanghai”, which means a lightweight hard rock with quite a lot of keyboards.
If you’re familiar with this band since before, you will absolutely recognize the sound and production. They’re not afraid of adding some AOR touches at times, either – a fine example is “I forgive you honey” with some plinky keys, even.
I have to underline the solid lead vocal of MIKAEL LUNDGREN – or I’d say the whole band is solid in a quite professional way. The production is once again truly neat, and captures the softness of the AOR world but also the roughness of melodic hard rock. If you’ve got the time, you should also pay some attention to the rhythm guitars, where there are some nice licks going on.
The only downside is – like last time – the slight lack of strength in the songwriting. Maybe also a clearer decision about the music style. Don’t get me wrong, I love bands mixing hard rock, AOR and even some pop oriented moves. In the case of BAD RADIATOR, though, it’s like a crossroad. A turn to the left would mean stepping back to AOR/pop and focus on catchy melodies, an even more obvious potion of keyboards and much more harmony vocals. Especially the harmony vocals need to be utilized a lot more. A turn to the right would lead to an even more hard rock oriented sound, and type of songs. I would suggest the former, with regards to the type of clean voice from Mr. Lundgren which is much more suitable for soft AOR.
This works splendid as a background platter, and it’s a good album. In spite of some criticism, this a band I really like.