June 14, 2022

One day, hopefully far in the future, Jeff Scott Soto will sit back and look at his long and illustrious career and will realise what a totally impressive CV he has compiled during his journey as one of rocks greatest singers of our generation. I think you can be rather happy with the way your career has gone if you are in or have been in bands such as Sons Of Apollo, W.E.T., Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Talisman, Journey as well as performing and recording with Axel Rudi Pell and Yngwie Malmsteen plus many others and appearances on well over 85 albums. OK, He didn’t record an album with Journey but he was in the band and there are really not a lot of people who can claim that accolade!

Then we come to Soto’s solo career for which he has either gone by the name of SOTO or simply stuck with the more conventional Jeff Scott Soto but all vehicles have allowed him to deliver his high octane and always entertaining inimitable hard rock. His last album was the utterly enthralling Wide Awake (In My Dreamland) which came out in 2020 and featured so many trademark Soto songs of melodic metal genius. Complicated continues in similar form and style with Soto offering up any number of hard, heavy but melodic rock classics interspersed with several emotion filled ballads which sees Soto at his most soulful but all have a core of steel with sublime guitar breaks that are just achingly beautiful. As with Wide Awake Soto has brought in musicians well known to him with Fabrizio Sgattoni on lead guitar, Alessandro Del Vecchio on bass, keyboards, backing vocals and Edu Cominato on drums with Del Vecchio again on production duties. The musicians are so comfortable with each other and immediately slip into the groove as they combine so effortlessly to lay down 11-tracks of pure golden hard rock. Soto is imperious throughout with his voice still being so sweet, clear and strong and he is ably backed throughout by a quality team of musicians who seem to know instinctively what to do and when to do it to get maximum effect. We all know about the talents and skills of Del Vecchio but it is Sgattoni with his stunning guitar licks that comes closest to stealing the show from Soto but Jeff is an old hand at this and seems happy for his colleague to have his moments in the sun!. The songs are perfect for Soto and are designed to get the best from his exceptional voice and, again, he doesn’t disappoint as he storms through the set as if he is on fire and everything he touches becomes something magic. 

Jeff Scott Soto knows exactly how to deliver melodic and hard rock for maximum effect and he never disappoints with his sublime voice that is still strong and vibrant and as thrilling today as when he set out on the journeyman rock road. If you have followed his career then you know what you are going to get and if you are a new fan then expect quality sounds of superior metal which is obviously influenced by his work with bands like Talisman and W.E.T. The man never disappoints and Complicated is yet another quality addition to the wonderful discography of this quite incredible vocalist.

Complicated

  1. Last To Know (4:25)
  2. Disbelieving (3:39)
  3. Home Again (3:33)
  4. Love Is The Revolution (4:08)
  5. Until I See You Again (4:41)
  6. Complicated (4:44)
  7. Don’t Look Back (4:33)
  8. New Horizon (3:44)
  9. Back To The Beginning (4:30)
  10. Thank You (4:05)
  11. Obsession (3:17)