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LANA LANE

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Lana Lane picture
Lana Lane biography
Born in Concord, California, USA in ???

Lana Lane has rightly been dubbed The Queen of Symphonic Rock, but her music indicates a wider range of influences including progressive Metal, (Neo-) Progressive Rock, melodic Hard Rock, and even Pop Rock, sometimes with a light touch of Folk, Jazz, or Electronica. Lana's powerful yet gorgeous voice often drives the music, but the instrumental aspects are equally important elements of the band's sound.

The story of Lana Lane goes back to the late 1980's when Lana moved to Los Angeles where she met her husband Erik NORLANDER. This eventually gave rise to Lana Lane - the band. But before this, Norlander had Lana contributing backing vocals to his own Symphonic Prog band, ROCKET SCIENTISTS. In Lana Lane, Norlander is not only the keyboard player, but also the producer, as well as writing much of the band?s material. All Lana Lane albums are released by Think Tank Media, a production company owned by Norlander and Lane themselves.

The first release under the Lana Lane name came in 1995 with Love Is An Illusion. This album, as well as the next one, 1996's Curious Goods, made a significant impact in Japan, but it was not until with their third album, 1998's Garden Of The Moon, that they also found a potent European audience. They began touring Japan in 1998 and Europe in 2001 to support Secrets Of Astrology. Live releases followed. At the time of writing, nine original, full-length studio albums have been released, plus several special albums containing only ballads or only covers, plus several live albums, EP's, and compilations. Lana Lane has recorded cover versions of songs originally performed by Pink Floyd, The Moody Blues, Led Zeppelin, Queen, Rainbow, Uriah Heep, Kansas, Marillion, and many more.

In addition to her own illustrious output, Lana has also contributed vocals to albums by other artists including Ayreon, Ambeon, Gary Hughes, and Roswell Six.

Biography by SouthSideoftheSky

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Buy LANA LANE Music


El Dorado HotelEl Dorado Hotel
CD Baby 2016
$6.00
$10.00 (used)
GeminiGemini
Ais 2010
$9.11
$5.18 (used)
Garden of the Moon, Special EditionGarden of the Moon, Special Edition
Special Edition
CD Baby 2004
$11.95
$14.99 (used)
Red Planet BoulevardRed Planet Boulevard
Single
Think Tank Media 2007
$8.10
$7.18 (used)
Queen of the OceanQueen of the Ocean
CD Baby 2016
$7.99
$5.25 (used)
Ballad Collection Special Edition (Double Cd)Ballad Collection Special Edition (Double Cd)
Special Edition
CD Baby 2016
$11.93
Winter SessionsWinter Sessions
CD Baby 2016
$9.11
$7.98 (used)
Best of 2000-08Best of 2000-08
Victor 2008
$18.35
$26.67 (used)
Lana Lane 10th Anniversary Concert (DVD & CD)Lana Lane 10th Anniversary Concert (DVD & CD)
Multiple Formats · DTS Surround Sound · Surround Sound
CD Baby 2006
$11.58
$18.58 (used)
Lady MacBethLady MacBeth
CD Baby 2005
$9.11
$14.85 (used)

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LANA LANE discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

LANA LANE top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.82 | 14 ratings
Love Is An Illusion
1995
3.14 | 9 ratings
Curious Goods
1996
3.77 | 16 ratings
Garden Of The Moon
1998
3.95 | 16 ratings
Queen Of The Ocean
1999
3.54 | 19 ratings
Secrets Of Astrology
2000
2.65 | 13 ratings
Project Shangri-La
2002
2.64 | 9 ratings
Winter Sessions
2003
3.88 | 22 ratings
Lady Macbeth
2005
3.61 | 16 ratings
Red Planet Boulevard
2007
3.53 | 17 ratings
El Dorado Hotel
2012

LANA LANE Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.05 | 3 ratings
Live In Japan
1998
3.08 | 5 ratings
Return To Japan
2004

LANA LANE Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

3.00 | 1 ratings
Storybook - Tales From Europe and Japan
2004
3.79 | 5 ratings
10th Anniversary Concert (DVD)
2005

LANA LANE Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.14 | 3 ratings
Ballad Collection, Volume 1
1998
3.00 | 1 ratings
Best Of Lana Lane 1995 - 1999
1999
3.96 | 4 ratings
Ballad Collection Special Edition
2000
3.05 | 3 ratings
Ballad Collection, Volume 2
2000
3.13 | 8 ratings
Covers Collection
2003
3.00 | 9 ratings
Gemini
2006
2.05 | 3 ratings
Best Of Lana Lane 2000 - 2008
2008

LANA LANE Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

2.00 | 3 ratings
Echoes From The Garden (EP)
1998
2.00 | 3 ratings
Echoes From The Ocean (EP)
1999
3.05 | 2 ratings
European Tour 2001 Souvenir CD (Lana Lane and Erik Norlander)
2001
2.14 | 3 ratings
European Tour 2003 Souvenir CD (Lana Lane and Erik Norlander)
2003

LANA LANE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 10th Anniversary Concert (DVD) by LANE, LANA album cover DVD/Video, 2005
3.79 | 5 ratings

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10th Anniversary Concert (DVD)
Lana Lane Prog Related

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

4 stars After the relatively disappointment of the Storyteller DVD, Lane and Erick Norlander seemed to realise their mistake and quickly release a "proper" live DVD in the following year, the 10th Anniversary Concert. This time they provided a real good multi-camera view and songs from the same show (or, at least, from shows from the same tour, unlike the previous Storyteller). The result is everything one fan waited for a long time: the sensation of "being there", watching the whole performance of the same band members. This time they also got the right musicians too and avoided the big confusion that had to be fixed on studio for various takes on Storyteller. Now, besides her husband and keyboardist extraordinaire Erick Norlander, she has a new rhythm section of Pain Of Salvation bassist Christopher Gildenlow and drummer Ernst Van Ee. Lead guitarist Neil Citron unfortunately is not around, but Peer Vershuren does a fine job anyway. Most important is the return of Mark McCrite on second guitar and harmony vocals. His voice simply blends perfectly with Lanes and does a much better job than Kelly Keeling did on the previous tour.

The only problem with the 10th anniversary Concert if the fact that they tried, as much as possible, to avoid playing the same songs they performed on Storyteller. And since that included most of their classics, the set list here suffers, even if the quality of the delivering is way better than before. Her most famous song Symphony of Angels gets a the stunning visual it deserved, but many other live favourites do not. Great stuff like Through The Rain, Night Falls, Frankenstein Unbound or Escher┤s Staircase, just to name but a few, which did not get the right visual or the best performance on Storyteller, are missing. Not that the actual repertoire is bad, far from it, but I guess the title implies a compilation of sorts and most we get are album tracks and more recent material.

Still, I must say I like this DVD a lot: after all, is a whole concert, the quality of the the sound is top notch (as anything with Norlander┤s stamp on it) , Lane is a great singer and is in top form here. The band is tight and the songs, if not the ones we would love to see and hear, are very good: I specially like how Lane gives room to the musicians to shine and deliver great instrumental passages, making it sound like a band effort rather than a solo performance backed by excellent bunch. It seems that we┤ll have to wait some more time until we get a good live recording of a show that may include her classics together with the newer stuff. But for now this 10th Anniversary Concert will do.

Rating: somewhere between 3,5 and 4 stars, that I┤ll round up to four because of it┤s a great show regardless of the missing classics.

 Storybook - Tales From Europe and Japan by LANE, LANA album cover DVD/Video, 2004
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Storybook - Tales From Europe and Japan
Lana Lane Prog Related

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

— First review of this album —
3 stars Fans of Lana Lane were waiting for a live DVD for a long time. And, finally, in 2004 Storybook (subtitled Tales From Europe and Japan) came out. I was hoping for a full length show, but what we got was a compilation of live performances between 1998 and 2003. There are 20 tracks and as a bonus we have interviews with the musicians about every track: the menu has the option to listen to them before each song or to go straight to the music. As one might expect the repertoire is fantastic with live renditions of all major classics. But be aware that there are a lot of overdubs too: in fact Lane's husband and keyboardist Erik Norlander explains in the booklet that in one case, during the 2002 tour, all guitar - and visual - parts of guitarist Arjen Lucassen had to be erased and re-recorded by Peer Verschuren, due to the low quality of the former delivering during that tour. Incredibly, and much to the credit of the editors, you hardly notice that when you watch the video.

The quality of the music is absolutely spotless, as you can expect from a Norlander production, even if the word overdub screams in several occasions. Still, the music is great most of the time. On the other hand the visual quality of the tracks varies a lot: the most recent footage, on the 2002 and 2003 torus are the best and the only ones to feature multi camera shots. They are the best ones visually, but not great for today's (or even then) standards. The early ones, which unfortunately contains the top classics, are little more than amateurish affairs. Such bombastic and symphonic epics like Symphony Of Angels deserved better visual to match its stunning musical performance here. Another ironic and odd point is the fact that the low quality video songs are the ones with the classic line up that included guitarists Neil citron and Mark McCrite. On the 2003 tour there is only one axeman, the aforementioned Verschuren, and although he is very good, you'll end up missing the trademark guitar harmonies of Citron and McCrite. The latter also proved to have a better voice to harmonise with Lane than Kelly Keeling (who toured on 2002 and 2003).

Overall all the performances are very good and leave little or nothing to their studio counterparts: the sole real deception here is Through The Rain: this powerful tune should be a live show highlight, but Lane and Keeling two part harmony is no match to the three part studio version. Besides, the guitar solo is not as good and, for some unexplained reason, Norlander's stunning Hammond solo is included on this version. A real shame. But, let's face it, this is the only real bad move.

In the end I feel that Storybook has more of a historical value, specially for the Lane and the people involved, but was not what most fans, me included, were waiting for so long. I guess they got the message, for only one year after that Lane and Norlander would release the Tenth Anniversary Concert, a full concert video with a stunning band performance that captures Lane's show in all its glory. But that's another story.

This one has good moments, but is also too uneven visually. You can enjoy it in parts. 3 stars.

 Gemini by LANE, LANA album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2006
3.00 | 9 ratings

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Gemini
Lana Lane Prog Related

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Lana Lane┤s second cover collection album is quite different from the first. While Covers Collection (2002) had several tracks that were not classics and some bands quite obscure, this time she decided to focused almost entirely on classic stuff. The only real surprise is the two Foreigner tracks included here: the hard rocking Long Way From Home and the more progressive Starrider (both from their self titled debut of 1977, the latter certainly one of their best). The remaining tracks were from more obvious choices like Pink Floyd, Moody Blues, Heart. Cream and The Jefferson Airplane.

The best cuts are the Pink Moon Suite (four tracks from Dark Side Of The Moon put together with Heart┤s Johnny Moon), on which they do creditable, respectful and convincing versions that work very well with Lane┤s vocals. They alone may be well worth the price of the CD alone. Heart┤s Dream Of The Archer is another one, where it is clear that Ann Wilson┤s vocal delivering is one of Lane┤s greatest influences along with Grace Slick┤s (White Rabbit is covered too). Actually the only song that didn┤t really work is the Moody Blues Nights In White Satin, that somewhat turned out a bit dull and uninspired. Cream┤s White Room and Sunshine Of Your Love are a bit out of place here too, but are saved by the excellent instrumental work, specially of the lead guitarist George Lynch (Dokken, Lynch Mob). Lynch certainly is one of the highlights of Gemini, giving it a hard edge where needed.

While I can┤t say that this collection is essential, it is still high above mere good. The versions were very well done and the instrumental accompaniment is absolutely gorgeous. Small surprise considering the caliber of the musicians involved. Needless to say, Lane┤s vocals are also superb. Maybe, like the first, they should be a little bolder concerning the choice of material, but what to do? This is clearly an album that was done for fun and they did a fine job. Production and sound engineering were like always in the hands of Lane┤s husband, Erik Norlander (who also is presenting us with some of the finest keyboards works around these days). And he produced a very organic and crystalline sound.

In the end you get the impression they,if they wish so, could have made a living being a covers band only. Yes, they are THAT good.

Rating: 3,5 stars at least. A fine album to listen to.

 El Dorado Hotel by LANE, LANA album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.53 | 17 ratings

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El Dorado Hotel
Lana Lane Prog Related

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

4 stars It took me a little time to get this album, Lana Lane┤s previous CD Red Planet Boulevard showed some radical musical direction shift towards a much more AOR oriented stuff. Not that it was a bad move, but it did include some of the weakest stuff she ever recorded. And reading on the booklet that several members of John Payne┤s Asia were playing on the record certainly didn┤t dispel my fears she was even more deeply into that kind of music. Fortunatly, there was also the presence of her old Rocket Scientists colleages Mark McCrite, Don Schiff and Neil Citron to balance things. Besides, her husband, Erik Norlander, decided to stop playing to be John Paul Jones and concentrated in what he does best, meaning that his majestic and tasteful keyboards were on the forefront again.

Once I started to listen to the CD it was clear that the AOR tendencies are still around, of course, but with an edge and a much more inspired repertoire. In other words, those wonderful symphonic arrangements are present in force (the 11 minute In Exile being the best exemple, even if it is not exactly the best track). It seems that Lane had gathered the best of both worlds for a real strong and convincing album. It is ok that this is no Queen Of The Ocean, but still a real fine work that grows on you with every spin. There is great variety of styles and no fillers to be found here. As usual the performances are spotless: her voice is terrific but she is also a team player, giving the musicians plenty of room to contribute. The production is, as expected from anything Norlander produces, crystal clear.

It took Lana Lane five years to come up with a follow up to Red Planet Boulevard, against the usual 1 album per year during the mid 90┤s to the early 2000s. But it was well worth the wait.

Rating: 4 strong stars.

 Red Planet Boulevard by LANE, LANA album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.61 | 16 ratings

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Red Planet Boulevard
Lana Lane Prog Related

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

3 stars After the powerful Lady Macbeth (2005)and another covers album (Gemini), Lana Lane and her husband have decided to change their musical course: gone were the Rocket Scientists members and several partners of before and the only remaining musicians were Dutchmen Peer Verschuren (guitars) and Ernst Van Ee (drums). According to the liner notes, Erik Norlander explains that he (and Lane?) wanted a more direct approach, a kind of Led Zeppelin sound, with only guitar, bass and drums to back up the singer, with some keyboards provided by the bass player in the vein of Zep┤s John Paul Jones. So, yes, Norlander took up bass duties on all the tracks on this CD leaving his majestic keyboards more on the background. On some tracks, in fact, there are no keyboards at all.

The results? Well, it all depends with what you expect. But let me start by saying there is nothing like Led Zeppelin here at all. Sure, there┤s more hard rock on Red Planet Boulevard than on all Lane┤s previous releases, sometimes bordering the metal edge but often falling into the the AOR trap (just listen to a track like Jessica). On the instrumental side there┤s little no doubt both Verschuren and Van Ee are excellent musicians and capable of delivering everything needed. In the studio at least. Norlander is competent on the bass guitar, but he is surely much more accomplished on the keys and when he does a solo (like on Capture The Sun) you only wish he could have done more of the same on other tracks.

The tracks in general are good, specially the first three: Into The Fire, The Frozen Sea and Capture The Sun (although the opener, Into The fire, sounds like a sped up version of Into The Ether, from her debut album). The Sheltering Sorrow and Save The World are also very good, maybe because, like the aforementioned three, they are more into the old symphonic rock /classic rock mold that fits so well for her voice. The others are ok, but below par. As usual,. Norlander┤s production and engineering are simply perfect.

Conclusion: an interesting experiment. You can┤t blame them for not trying to avoid the easiest formulas and risking something different. Still, I really hope those beautiful layers of symphonic keys were used more. Kind of a transitional album, maybe. Good CD..Sometimes very good. But hardly essential. 3 stars.

 Lady Macbeth by LANE, LANA album cover Studio Album, 2005
3.88 | 22 ratings

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Lady Macbeth
Lana Lane Prog Related

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

4 stars After the disappointing Project Shangri-La, Lana Lane came with a CD based on William Shakespeare┤s play Lady MacBeth. I still remember how surprised I was by its energy and coherence (unlike some of their previous works). She and her musicians seems to have found the right balance between the symphonic rock of her earlier stuff with the heavier tunes of later ones. With Mark McCrite back in the fold (and Neil Citron also appearing on some tracks) the band was now on the right track and this CD is definitely one of her most successful. While much of her past sound is still around, it is a different approach (the inclusion of some Celtic tones on some tracks is a novelty). And a very nice one, I should add.

So we have back Norlander┤s vintage symphonic keys along with some blistering guitar riffs and solos. There are also several calmer moments too, plus a very beautiful instrumental (The Vision, one of Norlander┤s best). As one can only expect from such gifted musician/engineer/producer, Lane┤s husband and partner gives the record a crystal clear sound and balance with all the instruments and vocals appearing loud and clear and at the right moments. There are no real highlights here, except maybe for the aforementioned The Vision. It┤s the kind of album you hear from start to finish with no weak moments.

Lady MacBeth may not reach the heights of some of her best works like Queen Of The Ocean, but it is a solid and inspired album. It restore my faith in her talent and good taste. I┤m looking forward to hear her two follow ups. Rating: 4 strong stars.

 Secrets Of Astrology by LANE, LANA album cover Studio Album, 2000
3.54 | 19 ratings

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Secrets Of Astrology
Lana Lane Prog Related

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Well, after the highly successful Queen Of The Ocean, I guess Lana Lane faced the same problem of everyone who finally releases a masterpiece: what to do next? Instead of risking repeat the formula, Lane and her husband, keyboardist/arranger/engineer/producer Erik Norlander, decided to try something new. Norlander and Lane had already guested on Arjen Anthony Luccasen┬┤s Ayreon project, so they decided to say goodbye to the musicians they have worked so well thus far and go to Holland. Not surprisingly several musicians featured here are Lucassen┬┤s sidemen (only bassist Tony Frankim went along with them).

As one can expect, the resulting material is considerable heavier than on Lane┬┤s previous albums. There┬┤s a subtle but strong Ayeron influence all over the CD. Even if the progressive elements are right there, especially on Norlander┬┤s part, the classic rock/hard rock is not, replaced by heavy metal riffing and arrangements. if the new formula is better or worse, it┬┤s a matter of your personal taste. Generally speaking I liked the album, although Secrets Of Astrology never reaches the beauty and elegance of Queen Of The Ocean, and much of her previous stuff for that matter. There are several fine moments like the title track (a real classic) and Long Winter Dreams (the closest they got here to their former sound. It is no surprise that it┬┤s also the album┬┤s best track). As usual, no sing is really bad or weak. The production and engineering are also terrific: Erik Norlander is definitely a Jack Of All Trades!

Conclusion: an interesting move and a nice album. If you like Lane┬┤s more prog metal leanings you┬┤ll certainly love it. My rating keeps shifting from3 to 4 stars, but 3.5 would be more precise.

 Project Shangri-La by LANE, LANA album cover Studio Album, 2002
2.65 | 13 ratings

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Project Shangri-La
Lana Lane Prog Related

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

2 stars 2.5 stars, really. On the liner notes of the CD, Lane explains how much the events of September 11th (world Trade Center attacks, remember?) shocked her and her husband. And I wonder how much that fateful day affected the music as well. For everything here seems rushed: rushed compositions, rushed arrangements, rushed performances. Coming at the heels of a string of excellent and varied albums, Project Shangri-La sounds half finished and poorly conceived. Even if Lane and Norlander had assembled most of the same winning line up of their early albums (plus newcomer drummer Vinny Appice), the general feeling I get is that they didn┤t dedicate that much attention to the album as they used to.

To be fair the CD starts very well: the short instrumental Redemption Part I is one exquisite piece of neo prog that you only wish it would be longer, leading to the title track, one of their best and most powerful songs ever, with Lane┤s soaring vocals, Norlander┤s thundering array of keyboards and general brilliant performances of all involved. And suddenly, somehow things get stalled from then on: not bad stuff, but the tracks are not par with what we were familiar with, specially concerning the usual high standards of Lane┤s albums. They are ok songs, with ok arrangements and few surprises or memorable solos. Nice, but nothing more than that.

The real letdown is the final track, the italian song Con Te Partirˇ (Time To Say Goodbye):sung in both english and italian and featuring a duet with ex Yngwie Malmsteen┤s singer Mark Boals, this is the cheesiest thing Lane ever recorded and it┤s really lame. My CD finishes not with Romeo And Juliet as it is credit here but, a least with the south american release, it has that track deleted and replaced by a version of John Wetton┤s I Believe In You, which is credited as a bonus track for japan only!). It is also the only tune that has a different line up (Lane, Norlander plus drummer Gregg Bissonette).

Compared to all Lana Lane┤s records that came before, Project Shangri-La is her least satisfying work. And my rating reflects that comparison. Fortunately her next CD, the brilliant Lady McBeth would put her back on track. So if you┤re new to her output, this is not the best one to start with. But it┤s still good and worth listening. Judge for yourself.

 Ballad Collection Special Edition by LANE, LANA album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2000
3.96 | 4 ratings

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Ballad Collection Special Edition
Lana Lane Prog Related

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

4 stars The two volumes of Lana Lane┬┤s Ballad Collection were never released in Brazil. However, the double special edition reuniting both was. And for a reasonable low price. Lucky me! But don┬┤t be fooled by the album┬┤s title. Although Lana Lane always recorded ballads on her albums, this is not a collection of them. In fact, most of the tracks here could hardly be ever labeled as "ballads". Collection of slow songs? Whatever! Even the collection word may be misleading, since more than 70 per cent of the entire double album┬┤s repertoire consists of songs that are not available in any of Lane┬┤s official studio output. Even the ones that are, are re-recordings or have alternative mixes. So Ballad Collection stands very well as an album (or albums, if you have them both separately) of its own.

As usual, what you get here is Lana Lane┬┤s gorgeous vocal interpretations and Erik Norlander┬┤s tasteful arrangements and crystal clear production. Ok, some progheads will balk at the too "perfect" performances and lack of long instrumental passages, but, hey!, this is a singer┬┤s album! And fortunately Lana Lane is much more a team┬┤s player than a diva. The musicians have lots of room to express. And what fantastic musicians they are! As is his wont, Norlander is a very 70┬┤s influenced musician, he provides the recording with many vintage keyboards and a very organic production. He is a master player and mellotron fanatics will find lots of it over the tracks (albeit in a little more subtle and less dramatic way). Also of notice are the fine guitar lines and solos of axemen Neil Citron and Mark MacCrite. Bassist Tony Franklin also brings his fretless bass to several tunes.

I guess that Disc 2 is more progressive and interesting than disc 1 for this site, but both have many highlights and actually almost any lows.The double CD┬┤s best track is also the only song that was recorded exclusively for this Special Edition: a poignant and minimalistic version of Marillion┬┤s Seasons End. Lane and Norlander┬┤s arrangement and delivering is much better than the original and this is easily their best ever cover of all times. But there are lots of other good moments, both original and other people┬┤s songs. Among the latter I can point out the powerful delivering of Crosby and Nashs┬┤s To The Last Whale.... (impressive a Capella vocal on the first segment), the beautiful When Time Stood Still (ELO) and Supertramp┬┤s If Everyone Was Listening. On the former the superior version of Norlander┬┤s Avalon (recorded by his band The rocket Scientists), the haunting Ghost Beside My Bed and the excellent acoustic studio rendition of Through The Fire.

Conclusion: a very fine double album that is far more than just a compilation of slow songs. Although not all the tracks will please everybody (the palette is quite wide), there are no fillers and the delivering is superb on every one of them. If melodic songs with terrific interpretations is your thing, you can not miss this Special Edition.

 Covers Collection by LANE, LANA album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2003
3.13 | 8 ratings

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Covers Collection
Lana Lane Prog Related

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Anyone who is familiar with the work of Lana Lane knows that she and her band, lead by her husband, keyboardist extraordinaire Erick Norlander, always recorded one or two covers on each of her albums. Most of the time those covers were so good it was only a matter of time before they decided to record a whole CD of them. And why not? They are one of few artists who seem to tackle any song, even overplayed classic stuff, and do a respectful, almost note by note version and still give it a fresh and exciting extra,something really hard to find.

So expectations were quite high when this CD was finally released in 2003. And did it live up to those expectations? The answer is both yes and no. The problem here seems to be the fact that those guys are maybe too talented for their own good. And as much gifted and sharp as they are, not everything they touch becomes gold. Cover Collection┤s main fault is the choice of material: while covers of such classics like Led Zeppelin┤s Kashnir, Kansas The Wall and Rainbow┤s Stargazer seem pretentious, they are actually the best cuts, proving once and for all that these musicians may aim very high and get away with it. On the other side, Lana Lane and company also chose some obscure, lesser known songs from bands like Enuff Znuff, Aviary, Giant and TNT, plus some not very good stuff from Queen, Scorpions and Uriah Heep.

It is clear that no song here is bad. Norlander┤s tasteful arrangements and Lane┤s incredible voice give at least a "good" rating for every single track, even the weakest ones (Argent┤s Hold Your Head Up is definitely not a good song for her voice) . However, there are too many ballads and too few rockers, something that spoils the balance of the tracklist. In all, the album starts great and ends great, but the middle section is definitely below par, something that even the crystal clear production and engineering (again done by Norlander himself) could not help.

In the end I must say I like this album. After all, it┤s all very well done and clearly they love and respect everything they recorded. What is a letdown is realizing the fact that, with a little more care for the best tunes to cover, they could have come up with an excellent CD.They can handle even the most intricate challenges and should have been bolder. As it is, however, Cover Collection turned out to be "only" very good.

Thanks to SouthSideoftheSky for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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