Signed to A&M, Giant released a veritable classic with 1989’s ‘Last Of The Runaways’. The Terry Thomas production really lifting this album way beyond the pale!
Written by: gdmonline
ALBUM: The Last Of The Runaways
SERIAL: CD 5272
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA
LINEUP: Dann Huff – vocals, guitars * Alan Pasqua – keyboards, vocals * Mike Brignardello – bass, vocals * David Huff – drums
TRACK LISTING: 01 I’m A Believer * 02 Innocent Days * 03 I Can’t Get Close Enough * 04 I’ll See You In My Dreams * 05 No Way Out * 06 Shake Me Up * 07 It Takes Two * 08 Stranger To Me * 09 Hold Back The Night * 10 Love Welcome Home * 11 The Big Pitch
Dann Huff will be very familiar to readers of this site. Very much the ‘guitarists guitarist’ among his peers, and a well respected studio musician in the top echelon of his craft. How many sessions he’s actually appeared on is beyond numerical comprehension, but a quick check of the liner notes on any respected melodic rock album will see his name in there somewhere.
First coming to attention on the West Coast flavoured album by Greg Guidry (‘Over The Line’) back in 1982, Dann then preceded to make his mark on both the Nashville and Los Angeles session scene. He was also one of the founding members of Christian AOR heroes White Heart (refer their ‘Hot Line’ album), then found popularity as part of the ‘hot’ backing band for fellow Nashville luminary Van Stephenson. Dann’s appearances on ‘Righteous Anger’ and ‘Suspicious Heart’ really set him up for better things.
Wanting to make a ‘go’ of it with a new outfit away from the studio, Dann started putting the building blocks of the new project called Giant into place (a few James Dean references here I think) during 1988. Initially the band was to include former I-Ten and Celestium lead singer Tom Kelly, but as it turned out, Dann’s vocals were more than adequate, coming off like a Lou Gramm copy-cat!
Alan Pasqua joined on after he and Huff were introduced via the Whitesnake sessions with David Coverdale the previous year. With brother David on drums and good friend Mike Brignardello on bass hooking on, the Giant legacy was about to unfold. Signed to A&M, the band released a veritable classic with 1989’s ‘Last Of The Runaways’. The Terry Thomas production really lifting this album way beyond the pale!
The album spawned two singles ‘Innocent Days’ and ‘I’m A Believer’ during 1989, while their popularity rolled over into the early part of 1990, with their third single ‘I’ll See You In My Dreams’ reaching No#20 on the US Charts. However, the entire album was strong, from the melodic surge of ‘I Can’t Get Close Enough’, the intense energy of ‘It Takes Two’, and onward to the rollicking AOR of ‘Hold Back The Night’.
The arrival of Giant on the scene heralded an adequate replacement for the likes of Journey, Foreigner and Boston, who by this time were all in hiatus. To embellish their reputation abroad, Giant packed their bags for a UK tour, the band going down a storm with the starved melodic rock liggers from good ol’ Blighty!
Without doubt, ‘Last Of The Runaways’ was a further claim to the great year in melodic rock that was 1989. They really were a breath of fresh air in a genre that, at the time was very strong despite the fact that record sales generally were slowly on the decline. Much to everyone’s surprise, Giant moved on from A&M Records to sign with Epic, the band releasing the equally fantastic ‘Time To Burn’ during 1992.
But by this stage, the music scene had changed a the writing was on the wall for many bands not just Giant. In good news however, the band continues on to the current day, with Brignardello and David Huff still intact, but with replacement guitarist John Roth and singers Terry Brock and Kent Hilli taking up the frontman role at different stages.
I’m A Believer
I’ll See You In My Dreams