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John Wetton - Welcome To Heaven [Aka: Sinister] CD (album) cover

WELCOME TO HEAVEN [AKA: SINISTER]

John Wetton

 

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2.62 | 29 ratings

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kev rowland
Special Collaborator
Honorary Reviewer
4 stars 'Sinister' is John's new studio album, and it is simply the finest thing that he has recorded since the debut Asia album all those years ago. The worry is that it may be ignored as there is so much Wetton material flooding out, but take it from me this is one of the best driving albums you are ever likely to hear.

John has been working with some very strong writers, including Jim Vallance (Bryan Adams), Jim Peterik (Survivor), Dick Wagner (Alice Cooper) and David Cassidy (!!) among others. In addition, he has worked on only one song with Martin Orford and Steve Christey (where instead of using Dave Kilminster he has brought in Gary Chandler). The first song, "Heart Of Darkness" begins and ends as a gentle number, but inbetween it is a fine AOR rocker. Having already been shocked by the quality of the opener, I wasn't ready for "Say It Ain't So" which is a classic. Imagine Asia mixing with Bryan Adams in a power ballad that can also belt along, then you may have some idea of how good this is. "No Ordinary Miracle" is much more in line with his ballads, and slows the album down a little. Then it is back with the third Vallance co-write, which again ups the tempo. A gentle instrumental (featuring Robert Fripp and Ian McDonald) leads into the hardest number on the album. This is "Another Twist Of The Knife", and Dick Wagner riffs the song along, as John gets heavy. This has great hooks and features some of John's best ever singing ? it is worth getting the album for this song alone!!

The song featuring Jadis, "Silently", is the most 'progressive' on the album, and features some very characteristic guitar work from Gary. It comes a close second to being the best song on the album. Both "Before Your Eyes" and "Second Best" are slower numbers, and then it is time for the closer "Real World". This is John with a 12-string, joined by Steve Hackett (on harmonica!). Overall, it is an awesome album, one that I took out of my CD interchanger with much dismay. If you have ever enjoyed any of John's work, or just want to hear a great melodic rock album then this is one that you simply have to get.

Originally appeared in Feedback #62, May 01

kev rowland | 4/5 |

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