February 20, 2024

It’s quite a while since we last had an album from the cultured Canadian melodic rockers so Alive comes as a welcome release and it is quite incredible that this is their first full album release since Clifton Hill in 2008. It’s also strange that they did put out an EP, Hands Up, in 2018 which has a longer running time that the rather short Alive!

The band was formed back in 1981 and hail from Niagara Falls which apparently is the unofficial honeymoon capital of the world (no, I didn’t know that either) and it is this fact that gave name to the band. Founding member and vocalist Johnnie Dee shuffled the pack shortly after forming and there have been a number of comings and goings over the years although there is a core of what are regarded as ‘classic’ members of the band and many of these are on the new album with Dee being joined by Derry Grehan on guitars and keyboards, Dave Betts on drums, Gary Lalonde on bass with Peter Nunn on keyboards and this has been the lineup since the 2000s. I guess that for many Honeymoon Suite is a classic band waiting to be discovered but they were a big deal back in the ’80s and have racked up huge sales figures, triple platinum albums and have had songs featured on TV shows and films including Miami Vice, Bones, One Crazy Summer and Lethal Weapon so they must have been doing something right!

Honeymoon Suite specialise in cool, sophisticated and most definitely radio friendly AOR with just enough power to satisfy the harder rock community as they serve up some rather delicious and very melodic rock. Smouldering and burning, this is music for every occasion and it played to perfection with Derry Grehan laying down some real rocking guitar over which Johnnie Dee shows that his voice is as clear, confident and soaring as it was forty years ago. Derry Grehan is the main songwriter and he is expert at supplying anthemic and epic songs that are short but succinct and are everything that AOR is all about with perfect hooks and vocal harmonies to die for.

The only downside is that the album is just 38 minutes long but physical copies and download sales do feature two ‘bonus’ songs which have not been included although, to be truthful, 30 minutes of Honeymoon Suite is infinitely better than no minutes at all so welcome back boys and let’s not wait too long for the next instalment.

Alive

  1. Alive (2:42)
  2. Find What You’re Looking For (3:14)
  3. Done Doin’ Me (2:53)
  4. Not Afraid To Fall (2:54)
  5. Tell Me What You Want (3:01)
  6. Give It All (2:46)
  7. Love Comes (3:20)
  8. Broken (2:41)
  9. Livin’ Out Loud (3:02)
  10. Doesn’t Feel That Way (3:40)