July 29, 2022

As the title, perhaps, suggest this is album number 4 by the Swedish project that is Palace and I have to admit that the title reminded me that it is just a little too long since I last played that excellent live album with a similar name by the one and only Lynyrd Skynyrd! However, the masterful southern rock boys will just have to wait a little as Palace are currently occupying my attention and if you have heard the band before then you will know that you are going to be in for some excellent melodic rock.

The man behind the band is the Lithuanian born Swede Michael Palace, a fabulous singer and as skilled a multi-instrumentalist as you will ever come across as he writes all of the song’s, plays all the instruments and provides the voices too. As an encore he also produced, mixed and mastered the album so it is definitely fair to say that Michael Palace is one hell of an amazing musician but he is prepared to share just a little with Oscar Bromvall supplying the lead guitar on Hot Steel and Jordan Cox laying down backing vocals on Castaway. You may also have come across him either as musician or songwriter with other bands including First Signal (featuring Harry Hess), Cry At Dawn, Kent Hilli (of Perfect Plan), Find Me (featuring Robbie Blanc) and The Murder Of My Sweet plus ever so many others! 

Palace specialises in AOR/melodic rock with a distinct sound of those halcyon days of the mid-’80s when hair rock ruled the airwaves with much of his sounds and delivery being influenced by the huge American melodic rock bands of that era. He delivers classic, smooth AOR that turns back the clock whilst remaining fresh, upbeat and modern but I have always felt that AOR is a timeless music that never dates which certainly helps the longevity of the classic tunes from over 40-years ago. As expected, all of the songs are hook laden melodic delights built around beautiful choruses with classy lyrics delivered in accent free English and all backed up with excellent guitars and keyboards. Michael Palace may be based in Sweden but he truly has captured the sound of radio friendly American melodic rock that hooks you immediately and keeps your attention right through the album with absolutely no drop in quality throughout the 11-tracks that make up the album.

Just think of Michael Bolton in his prime, Hardline, Danger Danger and Harem Scarem then you will get a flavour of the quality of music that Michael Palace delivers up for you. One 4 The Road is another perfectly compiled album of retro-AOR that will soon have you singing along too and if you have an open top car then I guarantee that the roof will be down, sleeves turned up and away you will go on a real wave of nostalgia influenced beats. As mentioned earlier though, the music is fresh, crisp, upbeat and totally relevant to today’s rock music fan so, rather like Janus, Palace will allow you to look backwards and forwards at the same time!

One 4 The Road

  1. Fifteen Minutes (3:43)
  2. Westbound (4:12)
  3. Too Old For This (4:10
  4. Money Can Kill (3:06)
  5. The Driver (4:00)
  6. Time Crisis (3:51)
  7. Facing The Music (4:22)
  8. World Gone Mad (4:04)
  9. Living The Life (3:54)
  10. Cancel The Flight (3:51)
  11. Loneliest Night (4:22)