Toseland – “Renegade” (52 Music)
This is something else! If you’re wondering if vocalist James Toseland looks familiar then he is indeed the legendary former World Superbike Champion – twice! Now retired following an accident, he’s turned his attention to his childhood talent of being a pianist, as well as a singer songwriter and “Renegade” is the brilliant outcome! Following a chance meeting with Little Angel’s Tony Jepson (whom he’d never heard of!), the seeds were sown for what has turned out to be one of the top hard rock albums this year – if not THE one!!!! Honestly, this rages like one of those 1000cc Ten Kate Hondas or a Ducati with the throttle open and nothing but a free road ahead of you son – if I were James Toseland this would be the music I’d listen to on a bike – or maybe a jet fighter pilot! Assembling an awesome band to back him, Toseland’s clean n soulful vocals, which brought to mind Myles Kennedy, superbly complement the firebrand hard rock and beautiful power melodies exuding from songs like ‘Crash Landing’ and ‘Coming To Get Ya’. If that wasn’t enough then the heavyweight title track ‘Renegade’ brings it all home – it’s this year’s rock anthem bar none, telling Toseland’s own tale as a struggling Northern kid and written from the heart in the same vein as Skid Row did with ’18 And Life’, with no less the passion I might add. Coming outta the blue, Toseland & Jepson have impressed me greatly with their brilliant songs, talented musicianship and most of all, fire in their hearts so I give respect to these rock out renegades!