Tony Mitchell gives us a lengthy album, however, its attractive melodic qualities and healthy variety make it easy for the listener to be hooked at all times and never lose attention.
Written by: Dave T
ARTIST: Tony Mitchell
ALBUM: Church Of A Restless Soul
LABEL: AOR Heaven
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: England
LINEUP: Tony Mitchell – vocals, guitar, keyboards * Danny Vaughn – vocals (04) * Paul Hume – lead guitar * Tim Manford – lead guitar (02, 05, 06, 08, 10) * Shawn Charvette – keyboards * Nigel Bailey, Josh Tabbie Williams – bass * Neil Ogden – drums * Rogue Gallery Rock Choir – backing vocals
TRACK LISTING: 01 Church Of A Restless Soul * 02 Living On The Run * 03 In & Out Of Love * 04 The Mighty Fall * 05 * Electric * 06 I Believe In Angels * 07 Killing Me To Love You * 08 Never Wanted Love * 09 One Good Reason * 10 Sacrifice * 11 Shattered Dreams * 12 Evil Woman * 13 Heaven Is Falling
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Known as the frontman for 1990’s bluesy hard rock band Kiss of The Gypsy and the more recent project Dirty White Boyz as well, English singer/songwriter from Fleetwood, Lancashire Tony Mitchell has also released a string of solo albums, the most recent being 2018’s ‘Beggars Gold’.
This is his first solo album for the AOR Heaven label, backed by a band which includes members of Demon, Dante Fox, Midnite City and the aforementioned Dirty White Boyz, plus Danny Vaughn who shares vocals with Mitchell in one song.
With an organ intro reminiscent of Bach‘s ‘Toccata and Fugue in D Minor’, ‘Church Of A Restless Soul’ is a Gospel-oriented uptempo rocker that brings to mind Cinderella.
Bon Jovi‘s influences are present on the keyboard-driven AOR of ‘Living On The Run’ where I can also hear some Bryan Adams‘s inflections, as well as on the riff-driven melodic hard rock of ‘In & Out Of Love’ with its fiery, totally 80’s intro solo and an earworm chorus; and finally for the sheen melodic rock of ‘Never Wanted Love’ in which the chorus is silky and elegant.
‘The Mighty Fall’ features Danny Vaughn and his vocals only strengthen the quality of this slightly Heartland-styled rocker with prominent piano lines and acoustic guitars, yet not devoid of fat electric chords.
A more modern vibe is on display for the pair of the pounding ‘Electric’ and the funky ‘Evil Woman’ while ‘Killing Me To Love You’, ‘One Good Reason’ and ‘Shattered Dreams’ all seem to follow the Pretty Maids pattern of heavy downtuned guitars packed with superb melodies.
Two ballads are included. The poignant and mostly acoustic ‘I Believe In Angels’ was inspired by the untimely passing of Mitchell’s niece Corrine, to whom the album is dedicated. The soaring ‘Sacrifice’ stands out for its massive background vocals and a classy chorus.
‘Heaven Is Falling’, a heavy tune with an Eastern vibe on the keyboards and a memorable vocal melody, closes the recording with flying colors.
This is a lengthy album, over one hour, with half or the songs around or past the 5-minute mark. However, its attractive melodic qualities and healthy variety make it easy for the listener to be hooked at all times and never lose attention. I cannot help but thinking that if Bon Jovi were still doing quality Hard/Melodic Rock in this 2020, they would sound like Tony Mitchell does on this album.
The Mighty Fall (featuring Danny Vaughn)
Living On The Run