Still Living – Humanity
(S/R - 2016)
Brazil has had a steady but convincing contribution to the melodic rock scene in recent years, the fruits of which have included Sao Paulo starlets Superstitious and their stunning 'Ride On The Stars' album.
Still Living could possibly have the same members hiding here under false names for all we know. Frontman Renato Costa carries the same cream-smooth AOR range that rolls unhindered across opener 'Flying High' along with keyboard-friendly eighties numbers such as 'Signs'. 'Murder Of Crows', 'Stolen Prayer' and 'Shelter' that follow. 'You Remain Alive' opens with West coast soloing, strongly in the Michael Sembello vein of things while 'Humanufactured' has a hefty British edge to it - Ten and Magnum coming to mind slightly whereas 'Eyes' is a relaxing piano-powered ballad pretty much in the vein of a few European outfits I could instantly put a finger on.
'Way Back Home' opens with a peppery strum not un-similar to that at the start of Bonfire's 'Sweet Obsession'. The album rolls to a criminally abrupt yet crunching end with seventies soaked 'Rock and Roll Thunder', with a hugely time-captured keyboard sound and seriously classy guitaring from Eduardo Holanda to fit. Bonus cuts 'Hollow Man' and 'Surrender', digital single releases from recent years impress although would have worked better for impact if enmeshed amidst the ten main entries.
While only a slight pinch less instant than the other product of their country as aforementioned, 'Humanity' still shows you what that scorched ol' South American turf out there has to sell in the scene, which is to say the least rather a lot on the basis of this blistering album. Melodic rock is indeed Still Living, breathing and breaking loose wherever abouts on the globe you try and conceal it.
By Dave Attrill
RECOMMENDED IF YOU LIKE: Survivor, Vega, Mr. Big, FM, Journey & Europe.