Tyketto – “Reach” (Frontiers Music)
Given that ‘Forever Young’ from Tyketto’s 1991 debut “Don’t Come Easy” is still my all time favorite AOR song, the news of a 7th release had me in mixed emotions of both joy but also nervous at to whether it could compare. The band have certainly endured a fair number of hiatuses and line up changes, but with the original core of Danny Vaughn and Michael Clayton still in Tyketto, my confidence grew with every minute. “Reach” was recorded at legendary Rockfield Studios in Wales, following in the footsteps of musical icons such as Queen, Led Zeppelin, and Prince, and easily rates quality wise to Tyketto’s prior material – and amazingly still retains that unmistakable 90s’ AOR sound! In fact, after five years of solid touring following the release of their comeback album in “Dig In Deep”, “Reach” sounds as fresh as when I first heard these guys on the ‘Forever Young’ video! Danny Vaughn must be in his mid 50s by now but his voice is eternally youthful, with some performances making me wonder whether these were ‘lost’ tracks from “Don’t Come Easy”! Equally, he has built a solid band around him, and in Chris Green has found a worthy partner capable of delivering the riffs for kick ass hard rockers like ‘Kick Like A Mule’ while soloing with spirit on the hard n funky ‘Sparks Will Fly’ along with bassist Chris Childs deep, resounding plucking. One of the things I’ve always respected Tyketto for is that their music always sounds good however played and on ‘Letting Go’ they continue their fine acoustic tradition while on the power ballad of ‘Scream’ Vaughn & co show how they’ve expanded their musical boundaries by including some subtle orchestral strings. But for me, the one that takes it right back has to be ‘Remember My Name’ with its country element mixed in with hard stomping rock, heart grabbing melody and of course, utterly catchy chorus made all the more killer by those echoing vocal harmonies. Tyketto are a band simply too good to be ignored by the uninitiated but thanks to Frontiers Records, on “Reach” they’ve done just that!